Executive Resumes, Personal Branding & Executive Job Search

7 Tips: Land Mines to Avoid in Your CIO Executive Resume

Posted by Tyrone Norwood

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Oct 31, 2011 4:54:00 PM

Get Your Next NIf you are vying for  the top technology job in an organization, your resume has to follow best practices for writing executive resumes. But CIOs potentially face land mines that other C-level execs don't have to worry about. Here are seven of them:

  1. Don't Blow the Title. The top technology executive in an organization can have a different title depending on the company: CIO, CTO, VP of IT, or some of the other emerging names that converge technology and a functional business specialty (such as Executive VP of Marketing Applications). You want to be sure you capture the most common ones if you’re not going to tailor your resume to each job (the best idea). That way your keywords will help you show up in a search. If you are targeting a specific job, use that title.

  2. Don't Describe the Wrong Job. The top technology leader in an organization can have a scope of responsibility that varies widely from company to company. Try to provide as close a match as possible to the requirements of the specific position. This is another reason to tailor your resume. If you don’t tailor, be sure you include the primary competencies that a CIO is expected to have in a range of environments.

  3. Don't, Whatever You Do, Lead with Your Technology Skill Set! The technology leader is not, unless the company is a startup or a very small firm, usually the person who does the coding! So don’t write your resume emphasizing the exhaustive technical skill set you bring to the table! For the top job, people will be interested in you for your executive leadership, strategy, and technology visioning skills.  

  4. Don't Be Fooled into Thinking that the Top Job is Just about Technology. Think like a business-side C-level executive. Do not convey your major contributions and accomplishments in technology terms alone. Always be thinking about impact on top and bottom lines, considered broadly.                                                                         

  5. Don't Just Put in Your Accomplishments! That's so nineties. Sure, translate your accomplishments into quantifiable results. BUT, take the next step of putting them in context in order to convey the significance of the achievement – this single step alone will put you ahead of most of your competition.                           

  6. Don't Miss Out on Conveying your Brand. Articulate your career brand and value proposition so powerfully that you become the candidate of choice. There are a lot of great technology leaders out there with strong records. Don't come across as just capable. 

  7. Don't Write a Resume that Looks Like the Ones in Most of the Resume Books! Make your value prop pop out visually, so that the reader, whether viewing your resume on a smart phone, computer, or hard copy, will be able to grasp what you uniquely bring to the table inside of 3 seconds! Forget 20 seconds. We're talking 3.

Because CIO resumes are different from other C-suite resume and require very sophisticated handling,  be sure to pay attention to the above tips. Be as strategic in your executive resume writing as you will be in the job you aspire too - and good luck!


Image courtesy of jscreationzs




Topics: executive resumes, executive resume writing, executive resume, CIO resumes, executive job search, Get a Job, career brand

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Tyrone Norwood