Career Resources - High-Impact Accomplishments for Executive CVs
HIGH-IMPACT ACCOMPLISHMENTS FOR EXECUTIVE CVs
Employers, hiring managers and recruiters are all seeking the same things when reviewing potential candidates – unique tangible value demonstrated through quantifiable and qualitative accomplishments. Therefore, your executive resume needs to provide readers with an accurate picture of your personal “buying motivators” evidenced by significant career milestones
When creating the accomplishments for your executive resume, it is critical to describe the challenge (organizational, economic or market) and all the steps leading up the final outcome and results. In other words, for each accomplishment you include on your resume, you must be able to build a mini-story that tells the reader about the challenge, the strategic plan and action steps you put in place and the bottom-line impact that resulted from your efforts.
Below are four tried-and-true techniques that will help guide you in developing your high-impact accomplishments.
STEP 1: Describe The Challenge
What was going on with the company when you took over the position? What objectives or goals were you brought onboard to achieve? The challenges you dealt with don’t have to be negative circumstances, they could simply be opportunities or initiatives you were given to lead. For example, to increase market share in a competitive industry, reduce operating costs for one of the company’s divisions, improve customer satisfaction ratings in a 12-month period or help navigate a product launch in a new marketplace.
While quantitative accomplishments have a bigger impact on your resume, a well-written description of your challenges can be just as powerful. Examples include:
Tasked with delivering 10% return on $700 million investment portfolio in unpredictable real estate industry
Charged with reducing installation costs which peaked at 20% higher above industry norm and boosting operational efficiencies by 15%.
Hand-picked by CEO to increase profitability, improve eroding market share and repair strained customer relationships.
STEP 2: Describe Your Strategic / Action Plan
How did you address the situation and what resources did you employ? What new strategies or programs did you put in place? The purpose of this portion of the story is to give the readers insight to your leadership capabilities and problem-solving skills.
Without overwhelming your resume with minor details of each action step, provide an overall picture of the path you took to achieve an impressive result. Examples include:
• Recruited, assembled and trained top-performing sales team and utilized word-of-mouth marketing strategy to build client base and generate consistent revenue stream.
• Led transition team and orchestrated all facets of corporate acquisition including financial analysis, revenue projections, valuation and pricing, and bid submission process.
STEP 3: Quantify / Qualify The Results
What was the bottom-line impact of your actions? Was your plan successful? When quantifying your final accomplishment statements, make sure your write them in a manner that speaks directly to your performance abilities and core competencies. Once you have extracted the “meat” of each accomplishment, simply summarize the main points in one to two-line sentences. Examples include:
• Executed ardent negotiations and implemented innovative investment strategies to grow investment portfolio from $500,000 to $3 million in just two years.
• Created “first-of-its-kind” technology company to offer complete suite of IT solutions instead of a-la carte services; new strategy helped increase market share 20%.
STEP 4: Front-Load The Accomplishment Statement
Regardless of how powerful your accomplishments are, they will lose their impact if they are placed at the end of each sentence. Let the readers find out about the bottom-line results first and then use the rest of the sentence to support your efforts. Using the same examples given under Step 3, these are what the final accomplishment statements should look like:
• Grew investment portfolio from $500,000 to $3 million in two years by executing ardent negotiations and implementing innovative investment strategies.
• Increased market share 20% by creating “first-of-its-kind” technology company to offer complete suite of IT solutions instead of a-la carte services.
Abby M. Locke, Executive Director of Premier Writing Solutions (www.premierwriting.com), is a Nationally Certified Resume-Writer and Personal Brand Strategist who helps senior-level professionals and C-level executives achieve personal success with customized, branded executive resumes and career marketing documents. Her resume samples have been published in Nail the Resume! Great Tips for Creating Dynamic Resumes, Same-Day Resumes, and Quick Resume and Cover Letter Handbook.