Most business professionals are aware of the concept of a 30-second elevator speech about their company or skills that they must be ready to present at a moment’s notice. The resume is the same type of bite-sized introduction except that it’s on paper instead of in person.
Candidates for open sales positions may have less than 30 seconds to capture the attention of the person reviewing the resume. That’s why creating a compelling career objective statement and listing it at the top is so important.
The Resume Objective is a Personal Sales Pitch
The summary or objective statement on a professional sales resume must be short and directly to the point. It should summarize the applicant’s most valuable skills and experience. This statement also acts as a value proposition by framing how the company would benefit by hiring the applicant.
Including keywords in the objective statement also found in the job description ensures that the resume will get a closer look after a computer scans it. Some keyword examples include “estimating,” “forecasting,” and “lead generation.”
Provide Examples of Multiple Skill Sets
Sales is a multi-faceted job that requires agents to fulfill a range of roles. When preparing a resume, the applicant should indicate at least a few examples of the following skill sets:
- Communication: Most of sales is communication whether it’s verbal, non-verbal, or in writing. This is where the applicant might want to list experience with networking or public speaking.
- General: These skills are essential in all types of sales positions. Cold calling, consultations, and negotiation are some key examples.
- Personal Mastery: This should describe personal attributes that are a good fit for a sales job such as ethics and self-motivation.
- Position Based: Listing skills such as marketing or public relations associated with the current job opening would be ideal here.
Sales recruiters look for someone who can succinctly describe his or her technical and software skills. It’s especially useful to them when applicants describe their experience using specific software programs and create separate lists for showcasing the different categories of skills.
Use Bullet Points and Graphs to Break Up the Text
One or two pages of nothing but typeface may fatigue the person reviewing resumes to the point where they all start to look the same. Breaking up text with graphs that prove past successes as well as listing up to eight bullet points for the current position and up to four bullet points for previous positions is also a good idea.
Bullet points can also work well when listing qualifications because this makes it possible for the reader to skim the resume in seconds. Applicants should remember that the whole point of the resume is to convey value to the reader. They will want to include achievements and skills in this area such as experience with different types of software programs and traits that make them unique such as empathy with clients.
These tips touch on only the basics of preparing a resume for a sales job. Applicants might consider asking established salespeople in their network for additional tips on presenting themselves well on paper.
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