Have you done a yearly resume review?

The end of the year is a good time to reflect, review and update your resume.

For many, the end of the year is full of celebration, a time to spend with family and friends, and enjoy some holiday cheer.  According to Michigan State University Extension, it can also be a good time to reflect on the past year’s accomplishments, successes, challenges and goals when they are still fresh in one’s mind. During this reflection, take a moment to collect your thoughts and put them in writing by updating your resume.

Too often people wait to review their resume until they get laid off, fired or decide a job change is absolutely necessary for whatever the reason.  Many years may have passed since the last time you needed to have a resume or even looked at it.  Looking for work can be a stressful in itself.  Writing or updating a resume can add to the stress.  If, and when you find your old resume, it may need a total redo, especially if you are changing careers.

As the year comes to a close, take a few moments to consider the following questions. Your answers could be carefully crafted to revive and rejuvenate an out-of-date resume.

  • Did you receive recognition in school, work or from a community group you belong to?
  • Did you learn a new skill?
  • Did you complete a class?
  • Did you attend a training, conference or workshop?
  • Have you finished a project you have been working on?
  • Did you join a group, association or new organization? 
  • Did you meet a goal you set out to achieve?
  • Did you improve a new process, procedure or system?
  • Did you save your company time or money?
  • Did you increase sales or profits in some way?
  • Did you initiate a new program?
  • In what area do you feel you made your biggest improvements?
  • What are the three most important things you learned this year?
  • What is something you accomplished this year that you are proud of?
  • What did you teach your classmates, colleagues or co-workers?
  • What did you do to help your community, workplace or school?
  • What challenges did you overcome this past year?
  • What are you most happy about completing?
  • How did you grow professionally?

By keeping your resume up to date, you will be better prepared for the opportunities that come your way. Taking stock of your achievements, skills and challenges can help provide direction for building the career of your dreams.

MSU Extension offers clubs, programs and many volunteer opportunities you can utilize to expand your network, gain skills, increase your knowledge and revive your resume. Additional resources, articles and curriculum on career preparation can be found on the Michigan 4-H website.

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