Keep It Simple When Writing Your Resume

I could hear his frustration growing as we continued to talk. I was speaking with a dejected job seeker.

Lots of things were upsetting him. For his entire professional career, he’d been recruited or reached out to by someone in his network about new opportunities. Now, that was not happening.

He’d never had to focus on having a strong value proposition. In the past, his reputation got him where he needed to go.

When we reviewed his resume, he asked me if this or that was okay. I could sense his frustration growing as I told him he really should not be listening to people with no skin in the game when it comes to his job search.

His resume was a hodgepodge of various pieces of advice he’d either read or received from well-meaning friends and recruiters. The result was a complicated mess that failed to tell a compelling story.


It’s also counterintuitive. But when it comes to messaging on your resume, LinkedIn profile and cover letter, simplicity will win the day—EVERY TIME.

A good job search strategy is SIMPLE. A good personal brand or personal value proposition is SIMPLE. Neither should be complicated. You won’t hit your target if it is.


Focus on what makes you unique. Identify what impact you’ve had in the marketplace. Pinpoint what attributes make your skills, talents and gifts stand out from others. This is the nucleus of your value to a potential employer.

Your personal brand is your value proposition to potential employers—What can you do for them? What are you known for? Why do you do what you do? Answering these questions will simplify your messaging.

Not only will it simplify your messaging, it will help create a compelling narrative that allows the reader to see you as the solution to the problem they are having.


Don’t discount your intuition and common sense when creating your resume, your LinkedIn profile and cover letter.

KEEP IT SIMPLE. The process may not be easy, but uncomplicating it will produce clear messaging that will hit your target.