Advice from Resume Experts on What to Put on a Resume

The good people at Resumeble have spent their careers figuring out what to put on a resume. Some people think that writing a resume is no different from the skills and experience page on an RPG, or the list that describes a Smartphone’s features. Yet, there is more to it than listing achievements. You have to pick and choose what information you keep and what you hold back. Here are a few tips to help you figure out what to put on a resume.

What Are Good Interests to Put on a Resume?

As few as ten years ago, if you said your interests are movies, gaming, and comic books, then you would have been looked down upon. However, these days, nerd culture is a big thing. Comic books and manga have gained a lot of respect in the creative community. Your interest is movies is hardly a downside since YouTube influencers are making millions on the back of movies. And, where gaming twenty years ago was a toss-up between a plumber and a hedgehog, these days it is one of the most immersive forms of storytelling and entertainment.

Do not enter any sort of information stating that you enjoy recreational drugs, especially newly legalized or decriminalized drugs. The same rules apply for smoking, vaping, and drinking; just don’t mention it.

What to Put on a Resume for First Job?

Tell them all the experience you have had with “Anything.” Have you taken care of your neighbor’s dog? Then you have experience with animals? Ever babysat? Then you have experience with children. Ever do a paper route? Then you have experience with delivery and logistics. Cooking, cleaning, turning up on time, completing exams, cheerleading, and whatever else you have done you need to add. Fill out your resume with any form of experience because even mentioning something 1% relevant to the job is better than having a blank space.

What Are Good Hobbies to Put on a Resume?

Realistic hobbies are viable and should be considered if you are thinking about what to put on a resume. You can write that you are a keen surfer, but it may be hard to believe if you are 500 miles (ca. 805 km) from the nearest beach. You can claim your skydive, but doing it just once is not a hobby.

It is in your best interest to think about what your genuine hobbies are. For example, you may take clips from movies and splice them together with Adobe or Blender. If so, say that video editing is one of your hobbies, and even claim that you did a few personal projects, such as re-editing Pulp Fiction so that it follows a linear time span, or editing out the parts of the movie where the Flash was annoying in the Justice League movie.

Are you a twitch streamer? Avid TikTok viewer? Are you an Instagram influencer? Perhaps you enjoy teaching your kids sign language or making math videos that you upload to your own website. Perhaps you enjoy learning about unsolved murder crimes, or maybe enjoy mystery movies.

Any hobbies that show human interaction are a good entry on a resume. If any of your hobbies involve volunteering, participating in a club, or being part of a team (a sports or games team) is going to indicate you are comfortable around other people.

What Not to Put on a Resume

Anything negative should be avoided. Do NOT fall into the trap of trying to “Justify” what you think will trip you up in the interview. For example, you may have been genuinely ill during your exams and you scored poorly but do NOT give this explanation within your resume. Do not claim that you were ill, or that you passed without revising, or that you can do better now. Do not justify anything because it always involves something negative. As you consider what to put on a resume, try to remember that bad luck and adversity are also negative, so avoid them within your resume.

What to Put and What Not to Put on a Resume

The aim is to fill up your resume, and the worst thing you can have is anything negative. The second worst thing is blank space. That is why, if you have limited experience, you need to fill up your resume with any sort of experience. As you think about what to put on a resume, remember that there is more to you as a person than your work experience.

As time goes by, and you work more jobs and get more experience, you will have more to add to your resume. At this point, you should start including the relevant things, and leaving out things that are not relevant to the job in hand. For example, if you are going for a teaching job, then the six weeks you spent as a coach at a kids' summer camp is a fine addition to your resume. However, if you are going for a chemical engineer job, then maybe leave out the six weeks you spent coaching (unless your resume is looking a little sparse/bare).

What Are Some Leadership Skills to Put on a Resume

You can and should state that you are a good leader. When you think about what to put on a resume, think of examples beyond job titles if you can. Being a supervisor is fine, but what did you achieve as a supervisor?

What you really need to do is offer experience and examples of times you had targets and you fulfilled those targets. Obviously, the context depends on the type of job you are applying for but HR team members tend to associate hitting targets with being a great leader, so use examples. And, use the correct terminology, even if it seems a little phony. Use terms like, “Conflict resolution” and “Resource management,” and so forth.

Conclusion

Figuring out the content of your resume takes at least a little bit of practice. Your best bet is to keep coming back to your resume every few weeks to see if you can improve it. This is especially important if you are taking interviews or applying for different types of jobs because these experiences should teach you the right and wrong things to put on your resume. For example, an employer may question you on something you wrote on your resume, and when you get home, you may like to reconsider how that section of your resume is worded. You may even like to take that part out if the questioning got a little intense or uncomfortable. Perpetually improving your resume helps keep it fresh and effective.

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