You can list a bunch of words so a computer can find you, you can state an objective at the start of your resume, but neither is going to get someone to read much further. You have about five seconds to capture the attention of your reader, grab them, and share enough that they want to read onward. Some people believe the cover letter is key. Others will argue the resume rules. I’m a resume reader. I often don’t bother with the cover letter at all.
These ideal elements (described below) will help you build a powerful, concise, highlight, statement. As you prepare to enter the marketplace, build a comprehensive marketing presentation. This includes your “elevator pitch”, your intro statement on your resume, and your marketing presentation of yourself. Today we will focus on the introduction, stay tuned for more conversation about pitches and preparing for interviews.
Components of an opening statement
Like any journal or newspaper piece, the first line has to pull you in and be packed with important information. If possible, “show not tell” because it’s a more powerful tool. As you craft this statement, think about the key elements:
How many years of experience do you have doing what you do best?
- Over twenty years as a consultant and entrepreneur
- Ten plus years as an executive focused on strategy within the health sector
Where did you gain your experience?
- Academic training
- On the job
- Private, public or commercial organizations
- Sectors or industry verticals
What are your strongest skills or accomplishments?
- Technical expertise
- Subject matter expertise
- Specific skills demonstrated by a project or product
Closing an opening statement powerfully
How do you add value to an organization?
- Teach or train others in valuable technical skills
- Share knowledge and best practices
- Develop methods to streamline and produce superior results
Can you translate your skills and accomplishments into how a company will benefit from your talents?
- Grow client base by referrals based on special skill demonstrated with previous project
- Deliver high quality results that stand the test of time
- Publish or present at industry events to build reputation of excellence
The power of your statement will results in several outcomes. First, you will have succinctly presented the highlights of your many talents. Next, a potential employer will want to read further and gather more details. Most importantly, your carefully crafted document will entice the reader to want to meet you and learn more. That’s the goal of a resume, to be invited to have a conversation either by phone or in person. You are now one step closer to a formal interview.