How to Start a Resume 

How to start your resume

You want to sit in front of your computer to write a professional looking resume but can’t seem to get started. So you procrastinate and begin to feel guilty about it.

Psychological barriers surrounding various aspects of a job finding campaign are common. The inability to start and finish a professional looking resume is one of those barriers. It could be your stumbling block. But how to start a resume will cease to be a problem when you understand four common reasons job hunters procrastinate writing their resumes in the first place.

Reason #1 is you’re concerned that you won’t end up with a professional looking resume.

Reason #2: You think that you don’t have much to say because you haven’t done a heck of a lot in your career.

Reason #3: You feel you lack the necessary skills to write a professional looking resume.

Reason #4 is your belief that what you put down in writing is set in stone.

All of the above reasons are pure poppycock!

Resumes follow one of several accepted formats. So they all look alike. Therefore, there is no resume that is better, best, or more impressive looking. You will have a professional looking resume when you choose a format and start filling it in with accomplishments from your current and previous jobs.

Do you need help writing a resume? As you begin to write about the various positions you’ve held, you’ll be pleasantly surprised as you uncover many accomplishments you’ve forgotten about, along with the skills you used to achieve them. So the help you need comes as you proceed.

A job candidate who I coached told me he had forgotten that he led the Y2K project for his firm until he started writing his first resume draft. This is what happens to many job finding clients—they uncover forgotten achievements as they write. And a comment I hear frequently from job candidates involved in the resume writing process is, “Gee, I didn’t realize how good I was.”

You, too, will remember how good you were when you start writing. And resume skills are developed as you write.

When it comes to your belief that putting something down in a resume is like setting it in stone, you can always change a resume as your job search unfolds. It’s a great idea to update your resume along the way as you get clear about what you’re looking for. Remember, your resume is a work in progress.

Resume resources you can use include “Dummy” books about resume writing, working with a career counselor,  getting feedback from friends and colleagues, and Googling resume formats on the Internet.

Finally, the most effective way to start a resume is to use the GOYA formula. GOYA is an acronym that means “Get Off Your Anatomy” and start that resume right now.

You might also be interested in How to Make a Good First Impression in writing.

Copyright © 2015 by Ransom Place

About the Author

RANDY PLACE IS A JOB-FINDING and executive coach, writer on career topics, broadcaster, and host of For twenty-three years, he helped thousands of employees who had been let go from JPMorgan Chase find jobs. And he coached executives at CBS Television, Pitney Bowes, and major outplacement firms in New York on job-finding techniques, communications skills, and selling strategies. An accomplished seminar leader and speaker, Randy has designed and presented workshops on interviewing, telephoning techniques, job-search writing, and sales training nationwide. Randy's groundbreaking nationally syndicated radio series, Your Career Service, has been heard on over two hundred radio stations across the United States. And his articles on career topics have appeared in the Wall Street Journal's National Business Employment Weekly. A former broadcast journalist in New York, he has also been a commercial spokesperson for an array of national and regional advertisers. In addition, Randy was a sales executive at NBC Radio and the New York City sales manager for syndication at Wolper Productions. He holds a Bachelor's in Sociology and Broadcasting from Syracuse University, and a Master's in Journalism from New York University.