Recruiters Say: To Get the Job, Show your IMPACT

Impact 2

As a recruiter, I know resumes.  Over the years, I have poured over thousands of them.  A resume that is well put-together makes me feel like I know a candidate—where they went to school, where they worked, their major roles and skills, etc.  But some resumes wow me. They quickly tantalize their way to the top of the pile and scream “hire me!”

What’s the secret?  The best candidates know how to communicate their IMPACT.  The specific ways they have contributed to a previous position come across loud and clear.

And in an interview, their impact continues to jump across the conference room table.

Show Your Impact Tip 1: Specific, measurable details

Describe the specific contributions you have made with detailed, measurable facts. Lisa McQuerrey of Chron says, “List specific ways you helped generate revenue with dollar amounts or came up with an idea to better a procedure or save costs. The more specific, the better. For example, revenue in this product category increased by this amount during this time period.”  Put some thought into how things were before you came into a role and all accomplishments/ positive results that came from your tenure. Then, communicate this on your resume (and when interviewing).  Resume writer Cheryl Simpson explains: “Typically, a self-written resume will say something like, ‘Managed software development lifecycle for 3 products,’ when a more powerful demonstration of your skills would say something like, ‘Set the stage for $17B in new product revenue, shepherding full lifecycle Agile software development for a financial services application utilized by 3 billion consumers.’”  Wow! Three billion? $17B in revenue?  The impact here is quantitative and measurable.

Think about it as if you were convincing your boss to hire someone else- you would want factual ammunition to argue why to choose your candidate.

While interviewing, candidates should reference these same impacts and even ask questions to an interviewer such as: what do you want me to accomplish for you in the three months? What do you want me to accomplish for you in the next 12 months, two years, etc. (Simpson)?

Keep records: It can be hard to remember specific details throughout your career.  It is important to keep personal records.

Show Your Impact Tip 2: Show, don’t tell- use stories

When interviewing, an excellent way to help interviewers see and understand the impact you have made is to tell a memorable story. A story told with specific details sticks with an interviewer.  For example, if asked about a strength, Stav Ziv of The Muse recommends: “Talk about a time your strength helped you achieve something in a professional setting or when your weakness impeded you. For example, if you’re talking about how you’re calm under pressure in a fast-paced environment, you might tell the interviewer about that time you delivered a revamped client proposal after a last-minute change of plans.”  Again, always think of a specific impact a story can demonstrate.

Use this mantra of showing over telling in all communications with an employer—from initial inquiry to cover letter, resume, thank you letter, etc.

How to Create More Impact in Your Workplace

Before you can document specific impacts, you need to make them in the first place.  It is easy to become complacent in a position and lose sight of creating new impacts.  Lolly Daskal, Inc. contributor, shares a list of ten ways to make an impact at work.  Some of the highlights include:

  • Don’t be afraid to be a trailblazer and offer new ideas.
  • Be the “go to” person that people come to with questions.
  • Take the lead and show initiative with a positive mindset.

When it comes time to hunt for your next job, Artemis Consultants can ensure that you are communicating your impact clearly. It is crucial in landing your next job, but also affects compensation packages and more.

Do you keep a running list of the impacts you make at work?  Please comment or share.

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