Sample Resume Objectives: Read, Dont Copy

The resume objective statement is typically something that trips people up.

Confronted by the silent challenge of the blank page, most folks Google for "sample resume objectives". They hope that'll help.

Probably not.

I say that because sample resume objectives often are like sample resumes, or sample cover letters, or sample anything. They're samples. They aren't exactly what you need. They're fine for generating ideas, I suppose, but they come with a temptation.

Remember that apple affair in Eden? Well, the serpent made an attractive offer, and swept the downside under the rug. Adam and Eve went along. It seemed okay at the time.

The temptation with sample resume objectives is to copy them. You know, copy and paste? That's not necessarily evil, but it's often a lazy way out. Nobody will ever know, right? Maybe, maybe not.

Maybe nobody has ever said this to you before exactly this way, but you need to hear it. Your resume needs to be all yours. It's fine to get ideas from samples, but it's unwise to copy them.

The way I describe this to people is that your resume needs to talk like you do.

By all means, put your best foot forward. A resume isn't supposed to be conversational. It's supposed to be professional. It'll be at least a little more polished than the typical lunchroom chat.

But if you don't use the word "conceptualized" in normal speech, and you can't define it off the top of your head, you probably don't want it on your resume.

The same goes for sample resume objectives.

If you copy and paste a sample resume objective (or work experience, or qualifications, or anything), at least make sure you know what all the words mean. Maybe change the order of the points in there. Replace words you don't know with equally good ones you do. Learn to love your thesaurus (but don't go for weird words).

In other words, own your objective.

Remember, your resume should be selling you, not some mythical person writing checks your real-life performance can't cash. Don't set yourself up for failure.

(c) Copyright 2005 by Roy Miller

An article by Roy Miller, creator of A quick, successful job search is about more than copying sample resume objectives. Go here to find a simple technique to analyze any sample resume objective you find online: Sample Resume Objectives -- Stick With The Good Stuff. And if you liked this article, be sure to sign up for Roy's free weekly newsletter.

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