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Resume Tips: Should You Include a Resume Objective Statement?

No, you shouldn’t. Unless you want your resume to be boring and lame.

Captain Obvious was seen crying over a whiskey when power statements replaced resume objective statements. (Don’t feel bad for him; he’s still busy with candidates asking tiresome questions at job interviews.)

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Here’s a resume objective statement:

“Seeking a job where I can use my skills in a dynamic environment.”

How did this ever become a trend? I mean, has anyone ever been confused by the purpose of a resume submission? Of course, you’re looking for a job!

This statement tells the reader absolutely nothing and is a waste of space, which is why it’s been replaced by a power statement.

Here’s a resume power statement:

“Customer-centric, down-to-earth Regional Sales Manager with proven success in building high-performance teams that consistently exceed revenue expectations.”

Which is more compelling? (See, Captain Obvious? There’s still a place in our hearts for you.) Power statements allow us to get right down to business by immediately engaging the reader with relevant information.

You have limited space on your resume, so use your words wisely.

(I’m coming for you, too, statement about references being available. You’re useless!)

Instead of stating the obvious, add some surprise and intrigue by describing who you are and what you bring to the table. The first line of your resume should boldly draw in the reader by quickly demonstrating how you will add value in the role for which they’re recruiting.

Let’s pick apart our power statement example:

►Strong adjectives (“customer-centric, down-to-earth”) tell you this person is focused on customers and able to behave in a manner that resonates with people.

►“Regional Sales Manager” is presumably the title of the job description.

►The rest of the statement tells us that this person has continuously built teams that surpass expectations, which sounds like it is important to the role.

How to create a great statement for yourself:

►Ask your colleagues and friends how they would describe you in the workplace. What adjectives do they use? Lead in with the good ones.

►This one is easy. Just insert the title of the job description.

  • If you don’t have experience in the job you’re applying for, you can instead choose a functional noun that would describe the person in the job (leader, manager, professional, etc.).

►Highlight the keywords in the job description. Do any keywords or themes appear more than once? Mention them in your power statement to quickly say to the recruiter, “I’m the one!”

A few more examples of good power statements:

►Board-certified Nurse Practitioner with 15+ years’ success ensuring outstanding patient experiences through effective collaboration and leadership in constantly evolving healthcare landscapes.

►Collaborative, mission-driven communications partner with repeated success orchestrating strategies and tactics to promote global reproductive health & international development.

►Emotionally intelligent, resourceful, and creative sales professional inspired by moments of genuine connection with customers.

►Ambitious, goal-oriented Scrum Master with success uniting teams and orchestrating timely software releases in ambiguous start-up environments.

Resume Tips: Ditch the obvious for the interesting!

It’s not hard to write a good power statement, and you don’t have to do it in a vacuum. Reach out to friends, get their input, and instantly boost your chances of getting in front of a hiring manager by making this one small change.

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