Are You Making These 5 Resume Mistakes?

When writing resumes, there are mistakes many people make that hurt their chances at getting an interview. Are you making any of these five resume mistakes when applying for jobs in museums?

Overdoing the Formatting
More traditional museums might require a more serious tone and layout than more contemporary and creative organization. That said, even more relaxed museums appreciate a level of seriousness in job applications than the general work culture might suggest. Stick to clear, traditional fonts organized in easy-to-read sections.

Not Being Specific
When writing about your accomplishments, be as specific as possible. Museum managers love specific figures if appropriate, so instead of just saying you cut museum expenditure, illustrate with some numbers. Another common crime is manager talk or buzzwords, which you should always drop before you send your resume. Highlight your enthusiasm in a way that links to what you’ve done, to ensure your descriptions don’t come off as generic or false.

Including Irrelevant Work Experience
This will depend on the job you’re going for, but if you’re a graduate looking to get your foot in the door of a museum, you should include relevant internships and leave out service jobs you did in college. This will leave more room to expand on the specific experience and skills gained in relevant positions, and highlight that you want to get your career started.

Listing Your Hobbies
This is controversial, but many hiring managers will tell you that it’s wasted space at best and makes you look immature at worst. The idea is to come off as traditional and professional. If you do have relevant interests that you think would be good to include, consider if you’d be comfortable talking about them in detail in an interview with the museum. If not, it’s best to leave them out. If the museum wants to find out about your interests outside of work to get a rounded sense of your personality, it’s likely they’ll ask in the interview, so think of a few professional-sounding examples beforehand.

Including Personal Details
Your name and contact details need including, but your age, marital status and religion do not. In fact, it’s illegal to ask for those details when interviewing in the United States, and this can work against you if the hiring manager happens to be prejudiced. It can also look somewhat unprofessional. You don’t need to include your graduation year either, which is an easy way for people to figure out your age. Once you’ve landed the interview, it’s easier to make a good impression despite any prejudgements they could make.

Your resume is the way you advertise yourself to museums, so make sure you’re not selling yourself short by making these errors. Keeping a traditional and detailed approach when writing your resume is the best way to give that great first impression that makes hiring managers want to find out more.

Jobs in Museums is the easy way to find employment opportunities in museums, galleries and historic houses.


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