For creative pros in search of a long-term position or a one-time project, your resume boils down to one word: Trust. Trust is absolutely paramount for creative types hoping to establish new professional relationships, and it’s a quality that isn’t easily earned. As it happens, it’s very, very easy to say that you’re a great artist, a great designer, an expert writer, or an experienced creative director. But simply stating these things doesn’t necessarily earn you any trust from an employer.
So how can you prove you’ll come through on the job? Here are a few moves that will help:
1. Know the rules, then break them. As in every other field, your official, formal resume should contain text only (no pictures), and it should be laid according to professional business standards. Your resume should contain clear subheadings for your summary, educational background, work history, and additional skills. But unlike belt-buckle manufacturers or investment bankers, your hiring managers will be pleased if you have the confidence to depart from this format a bit in the form of an online resume. In your summary and contact information, include links that can lead your employers to more information about you.
2. Your links can take reviewers to your blog and website, which should contain an online portfolio of your work and more detailed information about your track record of performances and publications. In these settings, feel free to show off. And give reviewers a strong sense of your style, your approach to the process, and how your audience has received your work in the past. Include testimonials, samples, videos, and thumbnail images if your work contains a visual element.
3. If you don’t have much of a professional track record, don’t worry. But make the most of what you do have. Any project you consider a success should get the full spotlight treatment—the more information you provide, the better.
4. Use the tone of your resume and cover letter to reflect your style. Are you going for sleek, cool, and controlled? Would you like to come off as a wild card who plays by your own rules? Do you want to emphasize that your client’s vision is your vision, you aim to please, and you’re a great listener? Read your audience carefully before you apply.
5. Attention to detail is central to trust, and so is a strong work ethic. Both of these qualities will come through in your formal resume and your online version. If your document is full of typos or the link to your website is broken, how can you be trusted to deliver a critical project on time?
Show how much you love your work, and how focused you are on bringing your vision (or your client’s vision) to life. A beautiful, professional resume is a great place to start. Visit LiveCareer and use the site’s Resume Builder and Cover Letter Builder to make a stronger first impression.