Editor’s Note: This is a guest post written by Dr. Chris Lopez who is a contributor for ODs on Finance and optometrist at a group optometric practice in New York. He enjoys helping optometry students and new grads navigate the career search.
Aaron and Dat are extremely strict about guest requirements in that they must be educational and informative to our readers. Every guest post is vetted, read and upheld to the highest standards of ODsonFinance. Your trust is the most valuable factor to us. We like having experts in their field write on our website, because honestly, Aaron and Dat don't know everything! Enjoy and give us feedback!
First Impressions Matter
They can make a world of difference in your interactions with others; they can dictate your perception of people; and they can make-or break career opportunities.
Job hunting can be a very stressful time. It can be uncomfortable to interview over the phone. It can be awkward meeting your potential employer for the first time. It can be heartbreaking to get rejected. Crafting a model resume is a useful method to improve your chances at landing your dream job. In all likelihood, a resume will be an employers’ first impression of you. Your past experiences will be evaluated, as well as your skills, school performance, and other details analyzed to develop a sense of why you may be the right fit for the job.
It would be impossible to hash out all of the specifics that come into play to build a well-rounded resume (not to mention that everyone’s opinion may differ)
4 Pointers to Help Jump-Start the Job Search Process
(1) Show Off your Background in a SnapShot
Similar to elite athletes, professional musicians, and sought-after public speakers, engineering an expert resume requires practice, time, and dedication. Being able to give employers a snapshot of the most important details of your background requires skill. The only way to improve skills is to perform them, critique them, adjust them, and try again. Make several copies of you resume if you have to, and don’t be shy about asking friends/family/colleagues for a second opinion. They’ll often be able to offer suggestions you may not have considered. PRACTICE!
2) List your Skills
There’s lots of options. I recommend keeping it simple by including the following at a minimum: an objective, education, (relative) work experience, (relevant) skills and competencies, and awards/honors. If you have proper formatting, there will likely be space leftover for other items, such as publications/presentations, languages, interests, volunteer experience, etc. to include at your choosing. Going into detail about these subheadings is beyond the scope of this article, but I will be breaking down these topics in a second piece to be posted in the near future.
3) Keep it One Page, Max Two Pages
We can’t forget the timeless debate and the ultimate question regarding resumes – should it be one or two pages? To be fair, there’s no unanimous consensus on page limits for resumes, but here’s my opinion. Put yourself in an employer’s shoes. If you’re hiring, it’s probably because you’re running a busy practice. Do busy people have a lot of time? Usually not. So if you’re busy and short on time, would you rather spend hours reading through a bunch of two-page resumes, or evaluating resumes only one page in length?
The latter is more likely. Don’t make things more complicated than they have to be – keep your resume limited to one page. Furthermore, being concise and having the ability to highlight the most important details from a lifetime of experience on one page requires skill, and is a subtle way to impress employers.
4) Resumes should be Visually Appealing.
You will have limited interactions with an employer before a hiring decision is made. Therefore, there will be few opportunities to inspire excitement on your behalf. Inventing a resume that is visually appealing will not only be more fun to create, but it will leave an impression on employers and help you stand out from the rest of the applicant pool. Remember, first impressions matter! If you would like to see an example of one of my resumes, see below.
Don’t pass up the opportunity to excite employers during your career search. Take the time to construct a visually appealing, informative, concise, and unique resume.
You won’t regret it.