A lot of horse industry resumes come across our desk here at Equimax. Most all of them suffer from a poor understanding of how to write an effective resume. Even career counselors at colleges and universities are commonly misinformed about how to write an effective horse industry resume. Here are some tips to keep in mind when you write your equine resume:
1. Focus on what you can DO FOR an equine employer, not what you WANT FROM an equine employer.
2. Avoid subjective opinions about yourself such as “organized”, “dependable”, “good worker”. Stick to the objective verifiable facts and measurable skills.
3. Be careful to state things in simple and generic ways. Don’t use big fancy words and impressive adjectives.
4. Spell out words. Don’t assume that people will know what AQHA or TX means.
5. Summarize or leave out anything about you that does not directly apply to the job you are seeking.
6. Be careful not to “blow employers away” with your qualifications. It is better to undersell your abilities.
7. Don’t give a long list of previous equine employers with the things you did for each employer. This creates too much repetition. List your skills and accomplishments separately, then give a short list of previous employers.
8. Don’t start with your education. Put it at or near the end. Employers want to see your experience first.
9. Do not include references. Make a separate list of horse industry references so you can include it with your resume or send it later as needed.
10. Don’t be too formal. The horse industry is not very formal. Use your name as you would say it if you were introducing yourself to someone.
11. Don’t give ultimatums. Remember that the best deal is a win/win negotiated deal.
12. Don’t provide information about pets, relatives, or family. That comes later, if need be.
13. Don’t do a rushed and sloppy job with your resume. That sends the message that you are a sloppy careless worker.
14. A resume should never be longer than two pages. One is frequently enough.
Remember, a resume is like a driver’s license. You need one, but it doesn’t drive the car for you. You will get a job because of the relationship you build with a potential employer, not because the employer is impressed with your resume. A resume should be a simple statement about you that helps potential employers remember you and keep you sorted out from other applicants.