Do you have a Power-Packed Resume?

power-packed resume

Photo by Ella’s Dad

I had to smile at this e-mail from a client yesterday: “I’ll walk in Monday with a smile knowing I have a power-packed resume!”

Life’s been very busy for me lately. Actually, it is always that way but lately the cause has been a blessing of client projects mostly generated by the story. I actually like a full plate so it has been fine but a bit of a balancing act.

Notes like the one above are what keep me pressing on to get the projects finalized so I can hear the success stories.

What’s the difference between “just a resume” and a power-packed resume?

  • Just a resume is bare bones, often 1 page, jammed with nondescript duties and nothing compelling.
  • A Power-packed Resume takes the person’s stories and weaves them into accomplishment-focused stories: “Forged key client relationship to finalize $10,000 annual small business advertising account.
  • Just a resume lists a line of jobs with no details to make you want to read on.
  • A Power-packed Resume weaves a story of success and captures you with a compelling profile: “Energetic and innovative leader who can structure and manage revenue streams and expenses to maximize the bottom line and create best path of fiscal success…”
  • Just a resume drones on without anything to make you care.
  • A Power-packed Resume might include quotes from employers or customers that prove the value of the applicant: “You have maintained an outstanding attitude toward your work, fellow employees, and the company in general. I am humbled… It’s obvious to me that you know that a man’s value means so much more than a job. Thanks for inspiring me to be a better man, by what I’ve observed in you.”

It takes more effort and thinking from the career changer or job seeker to create a power-packed resume but when you have one, the results can be game changing!


  1. Master Resume Writer on March 13, 2011 at 9:13 am

    This post illustrates the message you deliver: it’s power-packed, doesn’t drone on and proves YOUR value.

    What an inspiring email from your client, and well earned, I’m sure.

    Thank you, also, for underscoring the need for detail on a resume, to help weave together a compelling story!


    • Julie Walraven on March 13, 2011 at 10:18 am

      Thanks Jacqui! I love sharing in my client’s joy when they discover their true value on paper. Their confidence soars and makes me want to do it all over again with the next client.

  2. Mark Harai on March 13, 2011 at 11:17 am

    I love this Julie – take your experience and “weave them into accomplishment-focused stories”

    Everyone likes to read a good story and it’s no different for a potential employer being intrigued by your personal story.

    Make the content count 🙂

    • Julie Walraven on March 13, 2011 at 1:00 pm

      You should see my clients, Mark, when I say I want you to think of the stories that made you different. Once we get that, then I can turn it into resume-speak. Or we start with old statements from old resumes and I just keep asking questions, writing, asking more questions, and then it becomes a power-packed resume.

  3. Danny Brown on March 13, 2011 at 10:25 am

    Hehe, two of my PR friends – Gini Dietrich and Rachel Kay – would LOVE this post, Julie.

    It’s so true, too – surprising how many people put so much effort into wowing you at the interview, but not enough effort into the thing that will actually get you there.

    Ah well… 😉

    • Julie Walraven on March 13, 2011 at 10:34 am

      Great point, Danny! and you might luck and get an interview with a poor resume but then you have no negotiating power if there is nothing to substantiate your talent at the interview. The resume almost always comes back into play at the interview as the interviewer strives to see if you do have substance.

      Sadly, most resumes don’t even get you that far.

  4. Bendos71 on March 13, 2011 at 5:31 pm

    I applied for a marketing role with an airline, so I created a resume that was a single page (printed both sides) that had to be folded into a paper airplane to be read properly.

    At the end of the interview I had the recruitment folk folding planes on the boardroom table and throwing them around laughing.

    Probably wouldn’t work for any old airline, but it certainly got Mr Branson’s team’s attention.

    And, yes, I got the job.

    • Julie Walraven on March 13, 2011 at 7:48 pm

      Unique approach that worked for you but it takes someone very comfortable and confident to pull that off. Congratulations! You were applying for marketing and that opens the door a little wider. I would caution most readers to be very careful with that level of creativity but you did make it work!

      • Bendos71 on March 13, 2011 at 8:45 pm

        Yes, was definitely a risk but, given the employer, I really felt like I had to make a statement.

        I certainly didn’t try anything like that when applying for a role with a very conservative Middle Eastern tourism board.

        Agreed…there’s a time and a place.

        • Julie Walraven on March 14, 2011 at 6:45 am

          Smart man – time and a place…

    • Mark Harai on March 14, 2011 at 6:17 am

      Love it Bendos – cheers!

  5. Melissa Cooley on March 14, 2011 at 6:30 am

    Your post makes an excellent point, and I love how the comments add to the value of it!

    I especially liked Mark’s comment: “Everyone likes to read a good story and it’s no different for a potential employer being intrigued by your personal story.” So true! A story of success that is tangible draws a person in. Showing a clear picture of value compels HR/hiring managers to want to learn more about that particular candidate.

  6. Kimba Green on March 14, 2011 at 7:26 am

    Once again Julie you hit it out of the park! It is so hard to reflect ourselves in our resume which is why a professional is the way to go. We all deserve a ‘power packed’ resume because we are power packed!

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