Results Based Resume


When it’s time to start looking for a job, everyone knows the first thing that must be done is to prepare a resume. To most people this is a daunting task. Once you start researching for the BEST kind of resume, the project goes from overwhelming to just plain confusing. You hear and read about all kinds of preferences such as chronological, functional, technical, and combination resumes (just to name a few). Then there are all the do’s and don’ts of choosing the best format.

No matter what format you decide to use, remember you want your resume to highlight all the EXPERIENCES and ACCOMPLISHMENTS you offer.  Choose a format that makes you stand out amongst other applicants applying for the same job.

Many resumes that I have reviewed over the years look no different than a restated job description. They list experiences and accomplishments as tasks versus value. That’s an opportunity lost!

So, while you are reading and researching resume formats that is best for you …

Make sure you keep your resume RESULTS-based.

RRelevant to the employer’s needs—that’s your goal. Know the position you are applying for and write a few phrases explaining how your skills will meet the needs.

EExperiences are best positioned as accomplishments. Describe what your work did and the impact it had on the position/company. Show, don’t tell.

SSpecific Examples should be applicable to what you want to do in your next job. These are referred to as “transferable job skills.” By explaining how you used communication skills, leadership skills, teamwork, and technical abilities, you will add value to your resume.

UUse Power Words (action words) to describe what you did. Some examples of power words are: managed, organized, developed, and created. Align this vocabulary with keywords from the prospective employer’s website and job description, and they will make your resume dynamic.

LLook and List. LOOK for spelling, grammar, and consistency. Does it make sense? LIST accomplishments using bullets at the beginning. The easier it is for a prospective employer to read your resume, the better your chance at an opportunity to interview for the job.

TTop One-Third of the resume is the most important. It should include your name, contact information, a summary of qualifications or a personal branding statement, areas of expertise, achievements, and education if you are a recent college graduate.

SSupports prospective employers’ number one question: “What can you do for me?” Interviewers may not ask that exact question, but it’s certainly what they are thinking when they read your resume. Your resume is the first step in determining if they should bring you in for the job interview. Everything included on the page should answer this question, whether it is in your summary of qualifications or through your accomplishments and experiences.

As you prepare your RESULTS-based resume, make sure you review the job description, posting, and company website. Use every tool at your disposal and do everything you can to address the employer’s question: “What can you do for me?”

The goal of this whole process can be summarized this way:

The best predictor of future behaviors are past behaviors under similar situations.

What behaviors (skills, accomplishments, experiences) have you demonstrated in similar situations, and how can they be of value for another organization?


A RESULTS-based resume will be the BEST way to showcase what you have to offer!

Communicate with Confidence

When describing your current job,
what impression do you leave?

confidence levelIs it Confident? Strong? Capable? Or are you leaving an impression that makes the prospective employer question your abilities, skills, and most of all, your value?

The critical element to getting a job today is CONFIDENCE. 

Confidence is conveyed the moment you walk into the interview room or make that first phone call and gets stronger with every moment of conviction.

Does the question “So, what do you do?” make you wince? Think about the last time someone asked you “So, what have you been working on lately?” Did you say:

  • “I am just a stay at home mom.”
  • “I am only an administrative assistant.”
  • “I am only a volunteer coordinator.”

These are examples of how women have described their current job situation during my Women in Career Transition Workshops.

I have found that, when asked, women are more likely to have a tendency to downplay their career position.

Using “ONLY” and “JUST” to describe your role can be a sign of weakness, low confidence, uncertainty. It just plain devalues the work you do.  These words are called negative modifiers. By using these modifiers you start by giving your audience (whether friend, co-worker, or even your prospective employer) a disclaimer! “Only” and “Just” downgrade what you are about to say and leave the wrong image of yourself.

You do not want to have to re-build yourself from a deficit; you want to present all the great qualities and skills you already possess!

How can you start changing the way you sell yourself? DELETE, OMIT, and STOP using any negative modifiers to describe your position. This small change will have a huge impact on your ability to communicate with confidence.

* * *

Some skills and qualities are required for employment, regardless of the position a company is hiring for. One of these skills is COMMUNICATION. Communication is a key attribute we all need to succeed in the workplace.

How you describe your role to others informs how your audience will gauge your communication skills and trust in your abilities. If you cannot communicate with confidence to an employer, then that employer will question your ability to communicate with confidence to them, their employees, and their clients.

You have the POWER to put your future employer at ease by giving them a clear, confident reflection of yourself.

As you are preparing for an interview, make sure you know as much as you can about the open position. Once you understand what the job entails you can incorporate pertinent words, skills, and experiences into how you describe yourself.

During the interview, think about these tips:

  • Start changing your words when describing your job
  • Omit “ONLY” and “JUST” from your vocabulary
  • Replace “ONLY” and “JUST” with words that describe the position you WANT
  • Align your background to the job

For example:

Instead of saying … Say this instead …
I am just a stay at home mom. I am efficient and highly organized individual.
I am only an administrative assistant. I enjoy working with a diverse group of people and projects. I have experience managing multiple day-to-day tasks to maintain a consistent and productive office environment.
I just coordinate programs as a volunteer. I have experience managing groups of people and complex schedules while filling enriching programs.

Answer these questions and think about how you want to be remembered:

  • What words do you want to describe you?
  • How can your experiences (paid or unpaid) be of value to a prospective employer?
  • What impression or connection do you want people to make when they see, hear, or think of you?

You have the experience. Now you have the tools to take hold of your image and get working on the career you know you want!

No skills? No accomplishments? Come on!

Do any of these phrases sound familiar to you?

“I lack the skills to get a job.”
“I have no accomplishments.”
“What am I going to do next?”
“Who would hire me? I’ve been a stay-at-home mom for 15 years.”

If you’re struggling with thoughts like these, you’re in the company of some great women. Again and again, I hear women say they are skill-less and not worthy to re-enter the workforce.

They’re wrong, and so are you.

By asking just a few questions, I’ve helped women uncover “transferable” skills they didn’t know they had. Building on that information, these women have re-packaged themselves and transitioned successfully back into the workplace.

How encouraging is this for you? (And how rewarding for me!)

Reflecting on the past year, list all your accomplishments.

At the start of my Career Transition workshops, I invite everyone to reflect on the past year and list all their accomplishments. Let me share how that went for Andrea.

Andrea is a 50-something empty nester who’s been a stay-at-home mom for 15 years. Her husband was just laid off from his job, and now Andrea has to go back to work.

When I invited everyone to list their accomplishments of the past year, most of the women started jotting down thoughts. Not Andrea. She motioned me over and said, discouraged, “I have no accomplishments.”

As a mother of four myself, I knew she was wrong. The first words out of my mouth were, “Congratulations, raising a family is your most significant, if not the greatest, accomplishment.”

I knew she was selling herself short, so I began asking questions: “What activities did you do this past year? What did you do as a mom? As a friend? As a volunteer?” I was ready to listen for “things done” and “time spent,” to help Andrea write her list of accomplishments.

Andrea looked at me and said, “The only thing I did this year was organize our annual family reunion in Michigan. It was a huge hit, well attended, and everyone loved it because I stayed within our budget.”

In the workplace, I thought, they would call Andrea a “Special Events Coordinator.”

As she discussed the specifics of this accomplishment, without even realizing it, Andrea used all four of the Universal Skills most companies look for when hiring prospective employees:

  • Leadership: planning, organizing, decision making
  • Communication: corresponding with attendees, contacting the resort, sending invitations
  • Teamwork: coordinating activities with other family members
  • Technical: using Microsoft Word, sending e-mails

As Andrea described this experience, her excitement and confidence grew, and her accomplishments began to fill the paper.


I see this so often. Women—especially stay-at-home moms—rarely take into consideration all the things they do in a year, paid or unpaid. They don’t recognize the transferable skills they possess—let alone how beneficial those skills would be to certain careers, industries or jobs.

But this is a fact: Every volunteer, every mother, every part-time worker, every career woman has a pool of accomplishments.

Remember Rosie the Riveter?

Rosie-the-RiveterDuring World War II, this cultural icon represented American women who left their homes and returned to work, taking jobs vacated by men who served in the military. Like many of us, they had to re-enter the work force. If those 20th century women could do it, why are we—women of the 21st century—questioning our skills, accomplishments and abilities to be successful in the workplace?

It’s up to you to realize the value you bring to a prospective employer. And it’s not hard to keep a log of activities, skills used and results. But if you’re struggling to do it yourself, then let me help.

Find your next career by choice, not chance. Reinvent your skills. Repackage your accomplishments. And most importantly, reinvest in yourself!

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Oh, if you’re wondering, Andrea completed the TKFay Career Transition series and re-entered the work force as an administrative assistant for a small insurance company.




Connecting values to vision

We’re only human. And one of our greatest human desires—in work, in life, in anything—is to be “connected.” Especially in a world where transition, change, and redirection are so much a way of life, connecting values to vision helps us align with and connect to what’s important.

Maybe you think about your values and vision. Even better, you might even talk about our values and vision. But have you taken time to write them down? Laid out in black and white, your Connected Values & Vision Statement is an incredibly useful tool.

The process is simple. Just write down what is important to you and how you visualize success. The value of this exercise is enormous, especially at times of transition: when starting a new job, beginning a new project, joining a new organization, launching a new business, committing to new objectives.

Connecting your values to your vision is as easy as remembering the ABCs:

About You

Write down your core values: the things that are so important to you that you want them to define the way you live. Then ask yourself, “Do I spend 80% of my time living these core values?” If not, then reevaluate your list—or your life! You will be more satisfied, motivated, and productive when you devote quality time to your core values.

And know this: If you don’t define your core values, others will do it for you. Why leave that to chance?

Be at Work

Your core values won’t change much over time; but your work values might. When was the last time you took stock of what matters to you at work? What do you enjoy doing? Where do your strengths lie? What skills and qualifications will contribute to your success? Identify what’s important to you in a work environment now, and write it down.

Knowing your work values can guide you in choosing the right project, assignment, location, job, company, or career. They form a checklist that helps you assess whether a situation is a good fit. For example, you can stack your work goals up against an employer’s mission statement or corporate culture, and look for alignment.

Create a Vision

Finally, write a personal vision statement that incorporates your core values and work values, factoring in your passions and strengths. When crafting your vision statement:

  • Begin with “I.” You own this statement. Make it yours.
  • Write in the present tense. These words are for the here and now.
  • Use concrete, specific words that describe the life and work you want.
  • Aim for no more than four or five sentences—long enough to be complete, but short enough to remember.

Here’s a statement I wrote for myself, years ago:

I want to obtain a job/career where I can balance my family and professional life while contributing financially to our family; allowing me the opportunity to continue to nurture relationships; supporting others with my talents; staying focused on myself, spiritually and health-wise; and maintaining a standard of excellence in my profession and family.

With this work complete, you’ll have a valuable framework for evaluating current work situations, future career moves, and even professional development opportunities. Connecting and aligning opportunities to your values and vision means taking control, so you can act with intention and make good decisions.

Your Connected Values & Vision Statement will serve as a benchmark to measure whatever comes your way:

  • Here’s a new opportunity. How does it fit with my values and vision?
  • Something feels “off” here. Is there some aspect of this work that is disconnected from my values and vision?
  • I want to make a stronger contribution. What needs to change so my work feels like an extension of my values and vision?

Crafting your Connected Values & Vision Statement is like drawing your own compass to navigate new pathways. With this compass in hand, you’ll be able to focus on priorities, make sound decisions, and choose opportunities rather than landing them by chance.

Take control. Practice those ABCs. Use that compass.


Note to Business Leaders

Companies spend thousands of dollars drafting mission, vision, and value statements … and then fail to communicate these important messages to employees. Some people spend years never knowing their company’s vision—let alone what it means or how their actions support it. Don’t let that happen on your watch! The same ABCs described here can be applied to organizations, too. Ask yourself questions like these:

  • What matters most to our organization?
  • Have we shared our mission/vision/values with all employees?
  • Do front line managers know the importance of our mission?
  • Are we connecting our customers to our culture? How do we know?
  • Are our people demonstrating the mission through their actions and strengths—especially as they relate to and interact with our customers?
  • Does our culture encourage continued training for people to grow in their ability to support our mission?