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Cracking the Tech Career: Insider Advice on Landing a Job at Google, Microsoft, Apple, or any Top Tech Company by Gayle Laakmann McDowell

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5Deconstructing the Resume

In the previous chapter, I told you what makes a good resume, and it was things like conciseness, structure, accomplishments, and so on. But seeing a bunch of A+ resumes does you only so much good.

In this chapter, I'll walk you through some sample resume excerpts and show what could be improved about them.

When you are reading these, first study the original resume and see if you can diagnose the issues.

Resume #1

This candidate applied for a position as an account manager.

Sample Resume

  • Cultivate client relationships for suppliers in home and beauty industry and help them achieve short- and long-term goals.
  • Create marketing and sales plans for cross-functional teams of 10+ people.
  • Analyze and determine customers with best ROI.
  • Prepare detailed monthly and quarterly reports for each business and present findings to senior management.

Assessment

This candidate has described her job responsibilities, which isn't all that useful. Responsibilities only tell us what she was instructed to do. It doesn't tell us if she was actually successful in them. Additionally, responsibilities are often fairly obvious from the job title, so describing them really doesn't offer much value.

Additionally, if you look at what she said, it's a bit fluffy and ambiguous. Cultivated client relationships? What exactly does she mean by that?

Improved Resume

It would be better if she said something like this:

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