I was reviewing my resume the other day (I suggest you do so at least 3-4 times a year) I wondered "what does this damn 2-sided piece of paper need to tell someone?". I'm in my 30's so I have a lot to cram in, so I decided to narrow down my thoughts to 10 skills that an employer (jobs/internship/fellowship) might desire. Here are 10 skills I think any resume should convey:
1) You can organize information- We all say we have organization skills, but does that resignate in your resume? For instance, do all your job listings have the same information in them; and at best do they use consistent bullets and spacing? You might say that is an editorial thing but it can matter to employers.
2) You are able to communicate- Not a biggie if you don't like public speaking, but remember your resume is like your hype man before you get on stage for the interview. Your resume should communicate: what you know, what you've learned, what you offer by the time they get to the end. Maybe think about what you list in the education, activities, or skills sections of your resume. The whole point is for you not to spend time at the interview discussing things on your resume that didn't make sense.
3) Your seriously Interested- Preaching to the choir on this one. Please review job requirements!!!! I have made this mistake a thousand times. Sometimes that one question you ignored or didn't answer completely can be used to weed you out as a "no".
4) Your education and previous skills are complementary- This is really something to address in your cover letter and resume as a combo. What your convey in one should appear in another. Want more info try some professional grooming and I can give your document a review and provide some feedback (for a small fee of course).
5) You can work with a team- Even if it is a quasi-team please include it in your job descriptions. It reassures an employer that you may have people skills.
6) You can solve problems- This is an underrated skill in a resume because it is hard to convey this in real-time on paper. I suggest you use experiences with reporting, making recommendations, etc....as a way to show your problem solving skills.
7) You are a leader- Now this can take on many forms. This does not mean you are in a supervisory position. But if you were ever the lead, authored a publication or contributed to a piece of writing, or simply suggested a new project for your team; you have demonstrated leadership skills. This will be just as thrilling for some employers than your rank or awards you received.
I'm sure there are mounds of other skills that should be incorporated into a resume. Let me know what you think!