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Use Numbers to Give Your Accomplishments the Attention They Deserve


   Article by Peter Vogt


Use Numbers to Give Your Accomplishments the Attention They Deserve

If you were an employer looking at a new college graduate's resume, which of the following entries would impress you more?

Clearly the second statement carries more weight. Why? Because it uses numbers to quantify the writer's accomplishment, giving it a context that helps the interviewer understand the degree of difficulty involved in the task.

Numbers are powerful resume tools that will help you draw to your accomplishments the attention they deserve from prospective employers. With just a little thought, you can find effective ways to quantify your successes on your resume. Here are a few ways to do just that:

Think Money

For-profit and nonprofit organizations alike are and always will be concerned about money. So as you contemplate your accomplishments and prepare to present them on your resume, think about ways you've saved money, earned money, or managed money in your internships, part-time jobs and extracurricular activities so far. A few possibilities that might appear on a typical college student's resume:


Think Time

You've heard the old saying, "Time is money," and it's true. Companies and organizations are constantly looking for ways to save time and do things more efficiently. They're also necessarily concerned about meeting deadlines, both internal and external. So whatever you can do on your resume to show that you can save time, make time or manage time will grab your reader's immediate attention. Here are some time-oriented entries that might appear on a typical college student's resume:

Think Amounts

It's very easy to neglect mentioning how much or how many of something you've produced or overseen. There's a tendency instead to simply pluralize your accomplishments -- e.g., "wrote news releases" or "developed lesson plans" -– without including the important specifics -- e.g., "wrote 25 news releases" or "developed lesson plans for two classes of 20 students each."

Don't fall into the "no figures included" trap. Instead, include amounts, like these entries that might appear on a typical college student's resume:

The more you focus on money, time and amounts in relation to your accomplishments, the better you'll present your successes and highlight your potential -– and the more you'll realize just how much you really have to offer prospective employers. Add it all up, and you'll see that playing the "numbers game" is yet another way to convince employers that you should be a part of their equation for success.


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