A resume is your personal brand. Like a memoir, you are challenged to select the right stories to convey your message. You hang a frame around your previous work experience that shapes the readers perception of your assets and liabilities in the workplace. You stress your accomplishments at each place of employment and show your future employer what you are capable of doing for them. But what about the accomplishments you can’t put on a resume?
These are my hidden accomplishment bullets:
- Sobered up at the age of nineteen, this Sunday will be sixteen years of continuous sobriety.
- Sponsored over twenty young women for as long as two years at a time, listened to ten fourth step inventories, read Bill's Stories 37.5 times, maintained my sobriety throughout.
- Created a relationship with another human being (my sponsor) that has lasted for over seven years and continues today.
- Worked all twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, some quite thoroughly.
- Managed not to drink in the face of being fired, losing several friends and loved ones, breaking up, being broken up with, moving fifteen times in fifteen years, giving up Oscar (the most precious wiener dog ever), fighting with my family, discovering I wasn’t valued in my place of work or loved at home, losing my will to live, being cursed at by my boss, finding out my boss was dead, losing an entire nights worth of tips, having my bike stolen, facing my peeping tom in court, missing my flight to Bosnia for overweight luggage, missing the evacuation helicopter out of Tbilisi, missing my friends abroad, and gaining so much weight that I didn’t fit into my fat jeans anymore.
- Forgave my mother and father for all their mistakes.
- Admitted my shortcoming to two former bosses.
- Didn’t sleep with my married boss, didn’t chase that boy that didn’t want me anymore, didn’t steal that chocolate chip cookie at Cosi (even though no one would have ever known).
- Singlehandedly created multiple on-line dating profiles resulting in 100+ dates from 2003-2006.
- Sat through fifty+ horrible dates and 30+ horrible first kisses, managing to give my date the impression that I was having a wonderful time throughout.
Dated one man for more than three months, resulting in a successful two year commitment.
- Maintained my MySpace and Friendster profiles, even when everyone else had moved over to Facebook.
- Singlehandedly packed, unpacked and entirely redecorated my apartment within four days of signing a lease.
- Invested forty hours of my Christmas Holiday helping a friend apply to business school.
- Volunteered to make baloney sandwiches for the homeless and continued to make them, even when faced with other volunteers’ lack of attention to detail or poor choice in breading.
- Did not murder the young woman smacking seven pieces of Bubblicious gum, blowing four-foot wide bubbles and screaming into her cell phone on the33 bus.
- Prepared gourmet meals for over 200 friends, threw 30+ theme parties over the past four years, wore humiliating costumes to 10+ of these events.
- Helped 432+ people revise their resumes, resulting in 100% satisfaction.
- Did the right thing 90% of the time, even when it would have been easier not to.
- Consistently expressed kindness to small dogs and children.
These are the bullets that reveal the most about me. These are the bullets that say I will always be willing to better myself, strive to treat my colleagues with kindness, not get drunk at the company Christmas party and always bring something good to the lunch room potluck. And isn’t that what really makes a good employee?
So go on, tell me yours.