What Not to Include in Your Resume

When you are looking for a job, your resume is the tool that gets you in the door. A resume is the first thing that an employer sees, and in a worst case scenario, it is the only thing that the employer will ever see. When you want to make sure that you’re going to get that call for an interview, you need to make sure that your resume looks great. You likely know what needs to be on your resume, but what about what should absolutely not be on it?

1. Lies

If you take nothing else away from this list take this: lies are never appropriate for a resume. Sometimes the person that is looking over the resume can detect a lie right away, and you will simply never get a call back. Sometimes, your deception can go on for quite a while, but when it is found it can and will result in a fast termination. Lying on your resume is something that only ever hurts you; if you are lying on your resume, you will almost certainly be found out, and the results are often worse than if you were honest in the first place.

2. Every Job You’ve Ever Had

You of course want your resume to be complete and thorough, but that does not mean that it needs to be exhaustive. When you are putting together your resume, remember to only put down your relevant job experience. If you are applying for an office job, for example, you do not need to put down your fast-food experience. A resume that goes into all the small and part-time jobs you’ve ever had often looks like it is being padded.

3. Politics

Whether you are a card carrying member of a political party or you simply put up a sign in your yard, make sure that there is no hint of your political affiliation on your resume. While it is technically illegal to discriminate against someone on the basis of their political orientation, the truth of the matter is that it still happens.

4. Photos

Some people attach photos to their resumes to give them a more human touch, but unfortunately, this often ends up backfiring. Because many companies have a non-discrimination policy, they make it a priority not to be swayed by how a respondent looks. That means that you have a picture on your resume, your resume may end up being tossed as a matter of course. Similarly, avoid putting any physical description of yourself on your resume at all.

5. Humor

A resume is not necessarily a place for your personality. It is a dry listing of facts and figures about yourself that tell the human resources representative whether you have the basic qualifications for the job. You may be tempted to be funny or sarcastic on your resume, and the vast majority of the time, this is a mistake. You can definitely humorous or even sarcastic at your interview, but skip the jokes on your resume.

6. Salary Expectations

When you are looking to get a job, you are of course thinking about the salary. However, when you want to know what the salary might be, you’ll find that your resume is not the place to start asking. Even if having a certain salary is essential for you, skip the salary talk until you actually have an interview.

When you put together a resume, the point is to get it past the first tier of human resources. Make sure that you are not making any of these fatal errors!


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