How to Write an Executive Resume

Resumes have evolved and become more specialized. Just like jobs, one size does not fit all with resumes. Professionals must know how to write an executive resume to garner a position in high-level management positions. Whether your goal is to be the CEO (Chief Executive Officer) or a consultant, writing a resume with your career goal in mind is the first step. Remember, that a professional resume is your first step in the door to executive positions.


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    Think details. While brevity is a virtue in many executive communications, it's not uncommon to see two- and three-page executive resumes with details about experience.
    • Often, executive positions are filled by boards or a group of people who want all the information in front of them.
    • Depending upon the size of the company, a professional resume may have to go through several levels before it makes it to the hiring group.
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    Mold your resume to fit the position for which you are applying.
    • It's not only important to communicate your abilities, but to show how those abilities fit the high-level position. If the position most likely will include travel to China and you speak fluent Chinese, this is an important attribute.
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    Write a paragraph that highlights your skills and expertise.
    • As the opening paragraph to an executive resume, this paragraph needs to pack a decisive punch so the reader has no doubt you're executive material.
    • What sets you apart from other people applying for this position?
    • Think of the first paragraph as advertising your abilities and a way to tell the reader that it's worth his or her time to continue reading.
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    Focus on your achievements more than the work history. Although achievements most likely will include work experience, there may be other relevant achievements. Resume writing for achievements takes into account the position for which you're applying.
    • If you're applying for a Chief Financial Officer position, and you headed a volunteer group in which you increased revenues 200%, then this is an important achievement that needs to be highlighted, regardless of whether it's a paid or volunteer position.
    • The financial officer will focus on financial experience.
    • Other positions may be slanted to research or technical achievements.
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    Include a work history, using action words to describe skills and responsibilities.
    • Will the job titles or the company names be most impressive? Only you know the answer to that, but whichever is most important should be listed first.
    • Afterwards, emphasize the responsibilities and accomplishments of your positions.
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    Describe your educational background. Where skills and experience are most important in some jobs, education tends to be quite important in the executive resume.
    • List the institution and degree earned.
    • Don't forget any honors or special achievements earned in college.
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    Mention professional memberships and community service in a professional resume. Include offices that you've held and any specific outcomes.
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    Make certain that your contact information, including address, phone numbers and email address, is easy to find on the executive resume. You don't want to make it difficult for a potential employer to contact you.
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    Use a consistent writing style.
    • When writing resumes, it's not as important to use complete sentences as it is to be clear.
    • Action words make the reading more interesting and communicate your active, not passive, accomplishments.
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    Perfect the appearance of the executive resume. While the contents are important, so is the appearance.
    • Use quality paper with an easy-to-read font type and size.
    • In addition to using a spell checker, read through the resume for typos that the spell check function missed.


  • If you're mailing a professional resume, attach a cover letter on the same type and color of paper used for the resume.
  • More resumes are being submitted electronically today. Check if you can send an attachment or if you need to paste a resume into an e-mail. Another option is creating a website with your resume and including a link to that website in the email. Just make certain there is no personal information that you wouldn't want to share with an employer on that website.


  • If you email a resume, know that some characters like bullets can be converted to odd characters on the receiving end.

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Categories: Resume Preparation