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Recruiters’ red flags when reading an executive resume


Your resume combined with your LinkedIn profile, is your best introduction to someone who could be a key influencer in your career transition and advancement. This is why you have to avoid mistakes on your resume.

Working at an executive level doesn't mean you don't make mistakes when writing your resume. In fact, job searches for executive positions can be very different from professional-level job searches, so you may be more likely to make mistakes than lower-level candidates.


Putting yourself in the minds of recruiters will give you valuable insight on how to write your resume. Of course, executives are not allowed to make mistakes on their CVs. So to help you, let's take a look at four key mistakes you should avoid:


1. Over-listing your tasks


Copying and pasting a job description into your resume will not create any additional value for the reader. Instead, share relevant content from your profession that demonstrates evidence of your skills that match the job requirements. It is absolutely essential that you use the minimum amount of space on your resume to demonstrate why you are an ideal candidate. As an executive, do not list the responsibilities of your previous leadership role. It says nothing about what you did. Instead, focus on your successes and accomplishments. To be impactful on your resume, read the job description and review examples where you've highlighted these requirements. List them under your career history; not the job duties and responsibilities.



2. Unclear job target


At no point in your career you should submit a resume that does not clearly define your reasons for applying to this specific company. But at the executive level, this is completely unacceptable. If you're submitting a resume that looks unprofessional at this stage of your career, you need to change your tactics. When reading your resume, hiring managers need to be fully sure that you will know how to make a difference in their company. So be sure to identify why you're applying for the job and provide specific examples through targeted skills and achievements. In this way, you leave your employer without questioning your suitability for the position.



3. Lack of customization


In today's highly competitive job market, it is very important to tailor your resume (and cover letter) to a specific position. Indeed, it shows interest and commitment. Take the time to read and understand the job description. Then customize your CV to show potential employers how well you're suited for the job. Recruiters don’t want to feel like you've taken a one-sided approach of applying to every leadership position available. Avoiding this red flag will give you an edge over other candidates. This allows hiring managers to be confident that your resume will stand out from the crowd.



4. Making amateur mistakes


One of the worst things you can do as a manager is to submit a resume with typos, misspellings, or grammatical errors. If you can't validate your own resume, what kind of attention do you pay to the details? Making amateurish mistakes can be such a big hit for an employer that you reduce your chances of getting hired before your degree and experiences are even carefully considered. Writing the perfect resume is easier said than done, but as a leader, you can't afford to make mistakes. So, take the time to create a stunning resume. If you’re too busy, you can subscribe to Firebird. We will help you during executive job search and will provide you with some customizable resume.


There are no excuses for spelling errors today when spell checking exists. However, you should still always have your CV checked by a colleague, friend, or family member. Mistakes can set red flags and the recruiter could question your attention to detail, time management, and even your interest in a position. Use your resume to show off your professional communication skills by making sure your writing is concise and clear, and error-free.



5. Forget a title


Submitting a resume for a leadership position without a title can cost you an interview. The reason for this is that you cannot give the hiring manager an idea of ​​the type of job you would be a good fit for. The goal of the title is to tell the reader exactly what you're doing quickly. It could differentiate your application from other applicants from the start.



6. Ineffective personal branding


So many people don't know what their unique value promise, their differentiating factor, is. Create and make your brand visible on your resume, LinkedIn profile, email signature, and other relevant social media accounts. At a leadership level, you must have developed a strong brand. If you've worked hard for your brand, the last thing you want to do is forget to include it on your resume. Take the time to list where recruiters can find your resume online (such as LinkedIn) and publish your blog information (if you have one) to show employers how deeply rooted you are in your industry and increase your chances of getting an interview.



We can help you with your resume, cover letter, LinkedIn summary, and many more, by providing you with customizable templates for every situation.

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