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Writing the Winning Sales Resume

September 11, 2009

Does your resume do you justice, or are you apologizing because the format just isn't right? Does your resume tell a story? Does it clearly identify who you are currently working for, who your customers are, what products you sell, what your responsibilities are, what territory you cover, how long you've done it, promotions, and MOST IMPORTANTLY: HOW WELL you've done (and be able to show actual documentation on the interview)? If it doesn't, why not?? In today's economy, hiring authorities are under scrupulous pressure to make intelligent hiring decisions. Make them want to hire you!! To get employers to come after YOU, you MUST have awards and accomplishments DRIPPING off the resume. If you don't toot your own horn here, who is going to do it for you?

I have heard these two excuses a thousand and one times:

• "I didn’t put my accomplishments on the resume because I thought I would tell
the hiring authority about them when we actually meet."
"I didn't want to go over a one-page resume. "

Responses: If the hiring authority interviews 20 more applicants after you, he's not going to remember all of your achievements. If he reviews your resume once more after he's seen all of his first-time interviews, and he reads a ton of documented accomplishments, he will not want to pass on you without seeing you again. He must think twice before sending your resume into the "let's send him a form letter" round file.

Since your resume precedes you to the interview (the advent of e-mail has done this), you want the hiring authority to be excited about meeting you. A well- constructed resume is an extension of you. A "factitious" resume shows preparation, organization, caring, AND if you can creatively and excitedly present the product you know the most about - yourself - then the hiring authority will deduce that you can also plan and draft sales presentations and strategies for your customers.

If you know who the resume is specifically going to - and you both know some of the same people - why not put specific former employers, physicians, and other important names, titles, and phone numbers on a separate page at the end of your resume!

Employers look for:

•Achievements •Stability •Familiar Companies •Energy •Appearance (especially first impression) •Would I buy from this person?


1) Your resume should be in chronological order with your most current position listed first, including monthly and yearly dates.

2) Dates of employment as well as your stellar business references must be absolutely airtight.

3) There is nothing wrong with a 2-pager if and only if, you have the achievements and accomplishments to warrant it, and you must be able to document them.

4) Please have someone close to you proofread the resume. Misspellings and grammatical errors will eliminate you.

By Steve Paster, Paster & Associates