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5 Resume Fixes That Fast-Tracked My Career Growth

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By Braxton Wood

Ever felt stuck or unhappy with your career? Let’s face it – there are times when we all feel lost or unsure. If there’s no advancement, you’re unchallenged, or you’re ready for change, it’s frustrating. On top of that, sometimes you don’t know where to turn, leaving you more stressed about the future.

Would you believe that I have not set foot in a classroom since I was 11 years old? (gasp!) Yes, I have chosen an alternative path to my education. But I’ll tell you it has not been the slightest disadvantage. In fact, my lack of formal education has helped me discover what employers truly are looking for. With no schooling, I was forced to take another approach and find out what employers truly want.

In this journey, I learned five steps can make a huge difference in reaching your goals. Anyone who adopts these practices will start to make waves in their career too. And that’s what I want to share with you. So here are the 5 things I learned that will speed up your career journey –

Revamp your resume with these 5 game-changing tips! They helped speed up my career, and they can do the same for you. Get ready for growth and opportunities you won't believe! #CareerSuccess #ResumeRevampClick To Tweet

#1 – Don’t get discouraged

When you’re job hunting and not having any luck, it’s very disheartening. And unfortunately, human nature causes us to start doubting ourselves. There’s that little demon in the back of our minds telling us that our dream isn’t possible. That mentality can be pervasive and crippling if you allow it to creep in.

So here’s a reminder of what the truth is: It has nothing to do with you

I once worked with a job hunter who was unemployed for THREE MONTHS. They had applied to hundreds of jobs and didn’t get a single interview. This person is talented in their field, so I knew that something else was wrong. She spent only 30 minutes with me and I gave her some tips about her resume. That same night, she made the changes and applied for more jobs. In less than 24 hours, she got invitations from TWO different companies to interview! And more invitations came in within the week. Better yet, she received many offers and got to pick which one to accept!

I promise the problem is not with your skills, your abilities, or who you are as a person. It’s something else that is “off” and only needs correcting. More often than not, it’s in how you’re presenting yourself as a job candidate in your resume. The good news is that this is something you can fix! So don’t allow yourself to lose faith. There is always a path to success.

#2 – Explore Your Interests

I’ve never understood people who treat the rest of their lives like an escape from work. If the hours you spend outside of your job are wasted in unproductive activities, stop! Something as simple as changing your routine can invite new benefits for your career.

First, identify why you want an escape from work. Then figure out what it is that you wish you were doing instead. Even spending an hour per day in this new interest will start to open up new opportunities for you. If you become passionate about it, then consider how it can be a career.

As one without any schooling to show for it, this is the exact thing that introduced me to my career of 12 years. Keep in mind that it wasn’t an immediate jump from my old work into this new interest. It was the act of exploring new things that took me to where I am.

But here’s the thing. Had I not gotten involved in that initial interest, I never would have been enjoying the same career for the last 12 years. For all you know, you could be in a more fulfilling, more lucrative career in a short amount of time. But if you don’t take that first venture into something new, you won’t ever know that.

#3 – Build Experience On Your Own

Piggybacking off the previous point here. Now think about how you’re settling on an interest you’re passionate about and want to pursue. Consider if there are ANY opportunities to get into that field without schooling.

Unless you’re wanting to get into a regulated field, I’d bet there’s a path without more school. I’ve seen it time after time – success stories born from ambition, not more formal education. Isn’t that exciting to think about?

The purpose of doing this is to garner more experience so that you can put it on your resume. If you can show an employer that you have the skills, then education becomes less important. What they want to see is measurable results and how you add value. Once I figured this out, it was how I built my career without any education at all.

So now the challenge is finding the opportunities to build that experience! You can offer to do work for other businesses for free, coordinate local meetups on your topic, find opportunities to speak, and more! There are so many possibilities if you are willing to get creative. And with every milestone, you reach or benchmark you hit, make sure that ends up on your resume!

#4 – Set goals and DO NOT deviate from them

As you start building up your skillset and adding to your resume, it’s important to also map out a plan. One where you identify what you’d consider your ideal position. Once you have that pinned down, do an exercise where you mentally work backward from that vision. You do this by asking yourself “What milestone is necessary for me to get to that final step?” Then, write that answer down. Next, think it through again, but about the step that would precede that one. Rinse and repeat.

This is my approach to reverse-engineering your career. By doing this, you will identify the stepping stones it will take to get to your desired career. This will also help you uncover what goals you need to reach.

Lastly, you must commit that you WILL NOT accept any work that does not contribute to those goals. This level of discipline is intended to keep you on track with your goals and not settle for any position. It forces you to remain dedicated to your work and your skills so that you arrive at your ideal, no matter what that is.

#5 – The ABLE Principle

Once you’ve gained some experience, set your goals, and committed to your dreams, it’s time to think about expansion. This involves what I call the ABLE principle, or “Always Be Looking Elsewhere.” The approach you take may vary depending on the stage of your career, but in recent years, the job market has seen an increase in people changing jobs more frequently. This shift is not only acceptable but can be beneficial if you’re aiming to build experience and enhance your resume. The stigma around job hopping has diminished; the job market is now more dynamic and diverse. If your career moves are upward, employers tend to view this positively, recognizing the value you bring.

The ABLE principle capitalizes on this perspective, indicating that you’re innovative, results-driven, and worthy of the recognition your achievements garner. This mindset is key to rapid career advancement. Savvy employers are often prepared to take steps to retain such valuable talent, so make sure to use this to your advantage!


Braxton Wood is the owner of Marketing Career Jumpstart, which is a career guidance company that helps job hunters get more interviews, accelerate their career path, and make more money.

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06/20/2024 04:21 pm GMT

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