Your honesty in creating this personal document is highly important for, if selected for interviewing, you will likely be judged by total strangers as to the content of your resume against your actual interview performance and appearance. Therefore, your resume must bear a close "resemblance" to you when you are interviewed in person.
While your legal resume should be easy to read, it should also be quick to review. Therefore, you should try to limit your legal resume to one page. If you have ten or more years of experience, a two-page resume is perfectly acceptable. If you have a great deal of experience, and would like to highlight your transactional or litigation experience, or list publications and presentations, consider using an addendum. Experiment with different fonts to select one that pleases you, fits the page, and is easy to read.
Before you apply for a job of your interest, you must know what the employer is actually looking for in candidates. Depending on the next employer's requirement, you can focus on job skills that you are supposed to use in your next job. Do not list task you did in your past job or skills which are not required in your next job. While you write the job resume, focus on and describe skills that the next employer is searching for.
Next, take a look at your "summary" or "skill" section, and drop your keywords there. This is the best place to incorporate your keywords since those sections are typically at the top of the resume. This will allow your keywords to be picked up immediately by a busy recruiter giving your resume a 15 second cursory glance, or by a database scanning resumes and highlighting keywords.
Wow, that is just depressing! How many, many resumes must a person send out before realizing that this is a broken path for many of us. For every successful job seeker, I am guessing there are probably many, many more that did not succeed. Although I have mixed feelings about the value or viability of sending out resumes to openings, I would not dispute the importance of a well-constructed resume. My only concern is how it is used. I am a big believer in Richard Bolles' statement that resumes are something you leave behind versus something you send ahead.
The movie Legally Blonde showed Elle Woods, a young woman wowing Harvard Law School with a video resume outlining her unique and interesting talents. While video resumes are still not the norm, many wonder if the best way to differentiate themselves from others is to use video instead of the traditional paper resume. While an effective video resume can help a person seeking a job or slot at a prestigious college, there are definite pros and cons.
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