Six Things You Should Omit From your resume.

I’ve been working with job seekers, employers and recruiters for over 10 years now and over the years I’ve seem many mistakes or things people place on their resume without giving much thought to it. Things that would certainly lead to them not securing the job they were applying for. And without knowing they are undermining their own chances at ever securing the dream job they’re looking for.

I’m sure if I had the time or focus, I could point out over 25 such mistakes, but today we’ll concentrate on six of them.

1. Job experience that’s unrelated to the position you’re applying for only clutters your resume and irritates the potential employer. Always consider that she may be a very busy person and that her time is of value to her.  Did your paper route or high-school job as a cashier at Walmart really prepare you to be a team leader of Java programmers? There are other ways to prove your people skills, so stick with the jobs and internships that are most relevant.

2. Like it or not, some hiring managers will discriminate against employees based on their age. Technically, this kind of discrimination is illegal, but if you seem too young or too old to do the job, you may not even get an interview — despite what the rest of the résumé says. It seems to be common place in the Caribbean and other former British colonies that age and other personal information is included on resumes, but I’m sure it’s illegal in those places for employers to ask for such information.

3. Lies about your previous job experience, inflated to make you seem like the right fit for the vacant position. If you haven’t worked in a managerial position, you’ll be outed with a simple phone call to your last boss and immediately disqualified from the rest of the hiring process. If you feel uncomfortable about your lack of skill, focus on the positive and show how other great qualities would make you a great manager or supervisor. With the right “focus” you’ll get that interview and then be able to convince the potential employer why you’re the right person for the job.

4. Who cares about what your hobbies are? While some employers like to see that you’re active in the community or have won nonprofessional merits and awards, no one really wants to know that you love knitting with your great aunt or were named the beer-chugging contest winner in university. When in doubt, leave it out.

5. When should you include information about your family? NEVER!  Whether or not you’re married or have children does not belong on a résumé. Employers will automatically assume that as a parent of small children you will be unavailable to work odd hours. YOU should be the one to make that call, not them.

6. Even if you have a hard time believing in your strengths, your résumé is not the place to show weakness. If you know that you’re not a born leader, consider writing that you work well in groups or that you take direction well. Putting a positive spin on yourself will help the hiring manager see you that way also. there’s absolutely no room on your resume for negative thoughts/words.

I’ll revisit this post in the near future with some other great resume writing tips, to help you in your quest to locate and secure a better paying job.