6 Things You Should Take Off Your Résumé

coffee, apple, iphone

  1. Personal Details
    When crafting your résumé do not include any personal information (e.g. social security number, height, weight) beyond your contact information. In addition, unless you are applying for acting or modeling jobs, photos should not be attached to your résumé. These details do not relate to how well you can do a job, so leave them out.
  2. Personal Pronouns
    Personal pronouns such as “I”/“me”/“my”/”their” should not be included in your résumé. Since it is a document all about you, employers know who you are referring to. Equally as important is to remove any reference to yourself in the third person. Reading that “Jamie developed programs…” not only sounds arrogant, but distracts from the action verb. Instead begin with “Developed programs…”
  3. Unrelated Social Media Accounts
    You may be a proud that you still have an active Myspace account, but likelihood is that your employers will be less than impressed. Professional social media sites such as LinkedIn or GitHub can be great additions to your contact information section as they show your work history, experience or involvement – but please don’t include your Facebook, Tinder or Snap Chat accounts.
  4. Whimsy
    ClipArt, wingdings and swirly borders may be fun additions to your art projects, but they should not be included in your résumé or cover letter. Since these are professional documents, you want employers to focus on your amazing experience rather than being distracted by your latest obsession with the laughing emoji. If you are pursuing a job in an artistic field, a portfolio of your work would be a better suited place to emphasize your creativity.
  5. Unrelated Interests
    Listing interests on a résumé has been a long contested debate. While some people say that it shows personality, others argue that you won’t get hired based off of what you like to do on weekends. If you do choose to include an interest section, make sure that what you list is relevant to your potential role and not just a space filler – or worse, an offensive list of activities. For example, if you are applying to a Nutritionist role you could mention your blog on healthy eating rather than your interest in video games. Removing any unrelated interests shows focus and dedication to the role.
  6. Lies
    This is for obvious reasons, but all lies should be removed from your résumé. Employers want you to be happy and successful in your roles, and in order to do so, there are often key job requirements. Just because you have seen ‘The Social Network’ does not mean that you can code HTML. Make sure that whatever you include as skills or experiences should all be relevant and true.
By Erin Jouliot
Erin Jouliot Careers for the Common Good (CCG) Graduate Assistant Erin Jouliot