Why and How to Keep your Resume Current and Professional Part 2
By Julie Adamen
We know we do a lot as managers, but how to explain it on a resume without it being a litany of rote tasks (“take minutes” “perform walk-throughs”)? Quantify your responsibilities in real terms to a prospective employer or supervisor by focusing more on the big things and less on the weeds. A well-executed resume for community managers should include these “big” items:
Total budget responsibilities. Add up the budgets for all the accounts you manage. These are your total budget responsibilities. If you head a department, or supervise other managers, include those numbers as well.
Number and type of communities managed. Condos, HOAs, PUDs, co-ops, townships… Each one of these indicates a different managerial experience and you want the reader to know exactly what your experience consists of.
Number of employees. If you are a site manager or work in a supervisory capacity, employee management is a crucial part of your job. How many employees are you responsible for, and what are your duties in relation to those employees? Do you train? Hire? Terminate? Compose and present performance evaluations? Work with compensation issues? Make sure this is included.
Contractors. Site managers and especially portfolio managers supervise contractors. How many? Which ones? Totaling 10? 15? Let’s see it.
Contracts. Most managers prepare, negotiate and implement contracts. They also ensure smooth transition between contracts/contractors. This is a big deal and here is how you would phrase it: “Compose, prepare and implement third party contracts and ensure compliance thereto.”
Organizational issues. Site managers and executives usually provide overall direction, leadership and supervision of and to the corporation (firm or association). Portfolio managers do, too. Let’s see it.
Functional duties. Especially for portfolio managers, you may want a sentence or two on your functional duties, i.e., prepare meeting agendas and Board packets, perform walk-throughs, prepare and execute violation letters and follow up hearings, etc. But be advised that simply listing functions v. leadership or executive management experience does you no good when trying for an upwardly mobile career path. Think big.
Stuff you don’t think about
Your personal email address. Let me be clear: No cutesy email address on your resume that refers to your body parts, your nickname, your baby’s name, your dog’s name, your sexual proclivities, your favorite band, your tattoos or what liquor you prefer. Resumes need a business-like email address, such email@example.com. Having an email address of firstname.lastname@example.org makes you appear highly unprofessional and unserious.
Voicemail. Have a professional voicemail on your cell and at home. “This is Julie, I’m away from my phone but please leave message and I’ll return your call as soon as I am able.” No voicemail recorded by your 3-year-old, no dogs barking or loud music in the background; you want it to be as professional as that of your office.
Just plain stupid mistakes
Spell checking and not proofreading your resume. Spell-check will not fix improperly used words that are spelled correctly. The resume is you calling card; the document that can get you in the door or get that door closed on your nose.
Putting your salary on your resume. You can ace yourself out of an interview by either making yourself appear “overqualified” when a very high salary is listed, or end up with less salary than you should for the position you fill because you have been seriously underpaid in the past years (and you look like a patsy). Either way, you have nothing to gain by listing your salary.
Listing references without their knowledge. Employers do check references! If you put references on your resume, or attach a reference list, make sure of the following: 1) The reference recently consented to being on your reference list 2) The reference agrees to return the phone call or email of those doing the reference checking, 3) The reference contact information is current.
Listing references who give you a bad reference. What more can I say? DUH!
Facebook, et al. Listen up, especially you young folks out there: The internet is forever and if you think your Facebook page is private, it’s not. Neither is your YouTube, Twitter or Tumblr account. Stupid comments, nasty remarks, rants full of non-sequiturs and misspelled words and compromising pictures of you at the last bowling tournament are found in just a few mouse clicks. DO NOT put online, or allow anyone else to put online, things you wouldn’t want a potential employer (or your mother) to see.
LinkedIn is the social media site you should be using for making business connections and gathering information. I use LinkedIn virtually every day, and more and more if someone doesn’t have or use their LinkedIn account it makes me wonder if they are serious about their profession. If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile get one. A basic page is free, easy to navigate and acts as your online business card and resume.
Actively job hunting? Some tips…
Sending out resumes. When sending out your resume, you are far better off to send to the hiring executive or company owner than email@example.com. More importantly, it is crucial that you follow up with that same person every 10 days or so (no, it’s not stalking). Change it up – some weeks email and others leave voicemail. Don’t expect to hear anything from them, not even acknowledgement, until the moment they really need someone and the executive thinks: “Who is that person who keeps emailing me? They must really want a job!” Voila! You have an interview. This is how it happens.
“Personal” business cards. I highly recommend having some personal cards made that have your contact information with the look and feel of a professional business card. These are very handy when attending industry networking events. Which brings me to…
Attend networking events. You need to be networking as most jobs are found through referrals from friends or business associates. You find those friends and associates at industry functions (CAI luncheons, etc.). Attend as many functions as you can. Volunteer for a committee and always be ready to fill in where they need you. See and be seen. Your job now is to get a job and statistically they are not found by sitting in your PJs in front of waiting for a response from an anonymous job posting on craigslist.
You can’t move up in your firm or move on in business without always being ready for an opportunity. Help yourself by having and maintaining a professional resumes as well as a professional presence online. If you are seriously job hunting, you also need to get out there and network with other professionals and let them see you in action personally. All of these things, as well as those outlined in last month’s article, will help you start off the New Year right.