Today we have a treat – my JibberJobber Partner (career coach and resume writer) Julie Walraven answers some questions I have about the objective statement on a resume. You may have one of these on YOUR resume… if so, you’ll definitely want to read this. If you don’t, read it and you’ll have peace of mind about why you don’t have it. (Julie Walraven’s blog // Julie Walraven on Twitter)
Jason: What is the objective statement?
Julie: From my perspective, Jason, the better question is “What was the objective statement?” When thinking of the traditional objective statement, such as “I want a position that offers a challenge working with a committed team of people in a progressive environment,” this is an archaic phrasing that went away years ago.
Jason: What is the history of it? Was it controversial 5 or 10 years ago?
Julie: I researched my résumé books hoping to find an author that championed the objective statement in the above format. But even an old book that someone donated to my résumé book collection, written in 1983 by Herman Holtz, Beyond the Résumé: How to Land the Job You Want, I only found Holtz talking about why you want to be specific in your target.
The objective statement has been replaced by the banner headline of the résumé, which according to the notes from the “Mastering the Art of Résumé Writing” session at the 2010 Career Thought Leaders Conference & Symposium, says “Headline Provides immediate focus.”Louise Kursmark and Wendy Enelow from the Résumé Writing Academy who have co-authored many of the best résumé books on the market have long advocated dropping that lengthy objective statement.
I will confess that before I turned to organizations like Career Thought Leaders and Career Directors International for my source of information, I put those archaic statements on resumes back in the 80’s.
Jason: What’s the big deal today, why are people saying to not put it on?
Julie: A résumé is a marketing tool. YOU, the jobseeker, are the product. Gayle Howard, one of the world’s leading résumé writers writes in her book, “PS, You’re a Résumé Expert,” a guidebook for Career Directors International’s résumé certification courses, “This is one of the most hackneyed phrases ever written, and it’s all about me, me, me” Gayle’s amusing example continues, “How many people would actually prefer working in “a treadmill position, surrounded by boring deadbeats, in a potentially bankrupt, and stultifying atmosphere?”
Jason: What’s a good alternative then, if you don’t put on the objective statement? Why?
Julie: You want a Banner Headline, such as Sales Manager, coupled with perhaps a branding statement which adds uniqueness and personality.
Sales Manager | Operations Manager | Business Coach
Talented Leader and Manager with initiative to move projects forward.
Excels in delivering exceptional customer experience and satisfaction.
You could offset that with graphic lines or put it in a text box to grab the reader’s attention. This strategy puts you back in a marketing mode, again selling YOU the product.
Jason: Would it ever make sense to have an objective statement on the résumé?
Julie: No! Make sure that the advice you are taking for your résumé and your career marketing strategies is from someone who is connected with the leading career minds in the world. If you are using an old business textbook, you will end up on the bottom of the résumé pile with no offers in your hand.
Thanks for the opportunity to visit, Jason!
Julie Walraven — Your Career Marketing Strategist “When I began writing resumes, I had no idea it would become my career and drive me into exploring technology, career management, and recently, the intriguing world of social media. Networked with the best and brightest career minds in the world, I want to use my resources and knowledge to help you succeed in your career path.”