Here are a few of the most interesting stories on resumes published this week:
On Throwback Thursday, Tom Brady (yes, that Tom Brady) took to Facebook to post his post-college, pre-NFL resume. Chris Chase went through some of the highlights in a blog post for USA Today: “Merrill Lynch? Country clubs? Golf courses? Home builders? Brady has learned the value of work in different fields.” Brady was ahead of the curve in skipping the resume objective, but he did succumb to using some of the vague corporate-speak that tries harder to sound official than to convey useful information. There were also some unique entries on Brady’s resume, including “Guided football team as starting quarterback to 1998 Big Ten Championship and postseason bowl victory.” There you have it—proof that specific accomplishments stand out more than a list of responsibilities.
In this Washington Post blog post, Jena McGregor covers the resignation of Wal-Mart’s chief spokesman, David Tovar, after the revelation that he did not have the bachelor’s degree as he claimed. Tovar attended the University of Delaware, where he pursued an art degree, but he never finished the required coursework and never graduated. On his resume, he had said that he graduated in 1996. “Tovar is hardly the only high-ranking corporate manager who has lost a job due to questions about academic credentials on his resume—a matter of truth-telling that’s important for any executive,” McGregor says.
Unfortunately, Tovar and others who have lied on their resumes are hardly alone. In a recent survey by CareerBuilder, 58% of hiring managers said they had found exaggerations or lies on resumes, with 33% saying exaggerations and lies had increased since the recession.
In this Business Insider post, Jillian D’onfro looks at what Laszlo Bock, Google’s senior vice president of people operations, says are the things that make him reject a resume. He has personally reviewed more than 20,000 resumes, and said that the five most common errors are typos; length; overly-complicated formatting; revealing confidential company information; and, as mentioned above, lying.
When it comes to resume length, “A good rule, Bock says, is that you can have one page of resume for every 10 years of work experience….If you have a succinct, focused resume packed with only the most important information, it shows your potential employer that you know how to synthesize and prioritize information.”
Regarding lying, “As Bock points out, you can easily get busted thanks to reference checks and Google searches, and even old lies can still get you fired if they’re discovered. Plus, he adds, ‘Our moms taught us better. Seriously.’”