14 October 2013 ~ 0 Comments

Put Your Money Where It Counts!


I often tell people that writing your own resume is a lot like doing your own root canal – and most tend to agree. It can be just as tricky, painful, and impossible. Impossible because it’s too hard for you to be totally objective about yourself.

Even as a professional resume writer, I’ll confess that I can’t write my own resume – I can’t be objective enough about myself – I don’t think anyone can. I actually had to write mine once, to provide some background to an organization for a ministry in which I was involved, and I felt like the proverbial dog chasing his tail!

So, recently I had an epiphany. You see, I had a root canal that went bad – twice!


After suffering with a 6-year, round-the-clock headache in the back left side of my head, I decided enough was enough. I called my dentist (who had already paid an endodontist $1,100 to re-do the tooth) he x-rayed it and told me “there are no fractures or infections” but at my insistence, sent me back to the endodontist for a better x-ray (with better equipment). He also told me “no fractures or infections” but offered to re-do it again. I promptly refused and said I wanted it pulled. From there I was sent to the dental surgeon who x-rayed it and told me the same thing. But again, I insisted I wanted it pulled.

Within 30 seconds of pulling it, the dental surgeon said “Well, there were 2 fractures and an infection, so I can see why you were having so much trouble!” None of this showed up on any of their x-rays. From the outside (and according to them from the inside x-rays) you couldn’t tell that this particular tooth had anything wrong with it. No swelling, just the tiniest bit of tenderness when you pushed on it – almost not enough to even notice. It was a hidden danger. Even the experts couldn’t see it with their best equipment.

Had I not done my detective work and figured it out, it could have gotten a lot worse and I could have ended up with long-term health affects. You see, I had done my homework and knew I was right – after reading the book called “Am I Dead or Do I Just Feel Like It?” everything came into clear focus and made sense.


I’ve learned my lesson and will never have another root canal (or silver or gold filling – only white for me from now on). It’s just a dead tooth sitting in your mouth gathering deadly bacteria.

Can you name any other medical professional who leaves a dead body part or organ in you or on you? I can’t – and there’s a good reason for that!

And I’ve learned to put my money where my mouth is – if I can keep my teeth healthy, the rest of my health will follow. I can now clearly see that most (if not all) of our health issues start in the mouth. I had to go out of state to find the dentist that was “the best of the best” but it was worth it. My life was in his hands, and my 6-year headache is gone.


So back to resumes and root canals…

Just as my discovery of putting my money where my mouth is, I believe it’s important to put your money where your resume is for several reasons:

  1. It’s the first (and maybe the only) impression a potential employer will have of you. It is your “mouth” or your “voice” that is speaking for you and about you. So what is it saying?
  2. You are competing against countless others (it’s fierce out there these days) and many of your competitors are candidates who have top-notch resumes that will make your homemade version look too bland and unimpressive.
  3. Having someone write it who can view you from an objective viewpoint is crucial because they can polish it up and showcase not only obvious relevant details, but also information you might not have even thought about using on the resume in the first place!

Now I’m not saying you have to go with the most expensive service on the market – although you usually get what you pay for – and I’m not saying it’s impossible to have a good resume without using a service. However, getting the help you need is extremely important because everything pivots on the resume. So before you think about buying that new suit for the interview, it might be a good idea to spend that money on the resume that will get your foot in the door in the first place!

Most people don’t tend to see this as their root cause of not getting a job. I hear it all the time…

“My resume is really pretty good…” or “I have a good / decent resume…” but little do they know… until they are educated on what a “good” resume really is – especially these days, they may think they have a “good” resume but it’s really pretty basic or standard. And standard doesn’t make you stand out. In my career, after looking at hundred of “Before” resumes, I’ve honestly only seen 2 over the past 20 years that were truly up-to-par (in my expert opinion) and both of them were written by colleagues of mine who I know do only top work. Today it takes more than a “good” resume to win the job, even a “great” one only has a slight chance, so make sure you can effectively compete with top-notch self-marketing materials.

I had a client one time who called me and the first thing he said was “I’ve been unemployed for 9 months and am now on the verge of bankruptcy so I decided as a last resort to get a good resume developed!” I immediately told him that having a good resume should have been his first response, not his last resort! And I’m happy to say that it did solve his problem, but his stress level was through the roof!

The right resume will make all the difference in the world, and having it when you need it is just as important. So many times I hear “I just got an unexpected call!” Or “This golden opportunity just fell into my lap!” Always followed by “I need it yesterday!” But when a client is prepared and has a fantastic resume in hand, they often tell me “This is a real weight off my shoulders to have someone else do it – and do it right!” And “I now feel SO confident!” So think about it and put your money where it counts. Keep your career healthy with a good résumé!

Tracy Parish, CPRW

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