Things to consider when creating your resume
Before you actually prepare and submit your resume, David Meyers Associates suggests reviewing the following tips.
Things To Consider
- Always include first: your name, address, phone number and email address, so the (DMA) may immediately identify you and know where to contact you.
- Be objective about your career, experience and goals. Be truthful.
- Make that first appearance count. (When resumes arrive, the initial step is to scan them quickly and eliminate those that do not stand out.)
- Make your resume a marketing tool for the search firm interested in promoting you to the General Manager, Chef Search Committee and/or Board of Directors.
- List your professional experience. This is the essence of your resume. In reverse chronological order, list your more recent places of employment. Include the dates of employment and a brief description of the position, successes and accomplishments.
- Highlight the characteristics of the operation. If a club, include its type, size of membership and special features. Always include gross revenues, food and beverage volume and number of members if appropriate.
- Always stress the positive and de-emphasize the negative. (If there are negative points, be careful not to misrepresent facts.)
- Highlight your career accomplishments. (Remember General Managers are more interested in your accomplishments than your previous club structure or position.)
- Try to include a section with personal data, i.e., organizations to which you belong, charities you are involved with, awards and competitions etc.
- Keep it short and simple! (A resume should be presented on as few pages as possible. Be brief in all areas; wait to go into further detail until the interview.)
- Prepare a professional presentation. Convey impeccable quality and appearance in your resume as you will in your attire and behavior in a job interview.
- Present educational background straight-forwardly, stating degrees received, majors and names of institutions. If you have completed relevant courses, include the course title, institution and dates.
- Include a statement “References available upon request” at the end of your resume.
- Prepare a brief cover letter that highlights your relevant major accomplishments which can be found in more detail in the resume.
Things NOT to Consider
- Never include your race, religion or political affiliation.
- Do not create false impressions, claim experience you do not have, or accomplishments that are not yours. (If hired on the basis of false information, more may be expected than you can deliver, and it’s always likely that the truth will be discovered.)
- You should not list names, dates and places only…provide facts!
- Never, under any circumstances, send out a resume without proofing for typing errors or “scratch outs.” If necessary — redo.
- Never send a resume without a cover letter.
- Never send a hand written cover letter or resume.
Beyond The Basics – How to Improve Your Resume
Professional Profile Presentation
Many Chefs are going beyond the traditional resume to promote their candidacy. Creating a personal Website or a Power Point Presentation with pictures of food presentations etc. can help to elevate your candidacy to the “Top of the List” for consideration!
- List property ratings: (stars and diamonds, preferred properties, club of the year, etc.) This is especially important if you have worked for a hotel with varying properties, such as Hyatt or Hilton. Do not make the mistake of assuming that your resume’s reader will be familiar with the places you work, even if they are locally quite well known.
- Show stability: List all positions worked for the same corporations as sub paragraphs under the same heading.
- Reasons for Leaving Positions: If a position was very short term due to a limited term contract or an unexpected change of management. Rather than leaving this for the end of the listing, you can often work it into your title or job description. If you lost your position for reasons beyond your control, you may want to give a very brief nod to the closing of the restaurant or the Union policies requiring you as the last hired to be the first laid off. You can simply write: “Reason for leaving: Closure” at the end of the paragraph describing the job.
- Replace clichés with more descriptive terms: “California Cuisine” has always been a vague term, description of what you did. “Creative” and “People person” are so over used that they sound silly, as are “nouvelle” and “innovative”. You could try, for instance, “serving an Escoffier based cuisine with Italian and Hispanic influences.”
- Show logical career progression: Especially if you took a management position directly on leaving a culinary school but were qualified for the position by previous experience, show that experience in some manner on the resume. Working hard is held by most employers in high esteem, while instant success is viewed with justifiable skepticism. Experience and training are both important factors in most hiring decisions make use of both.
- Show promotions within the same company: If you were hired as a head waiter five years ago and have received one or more promotions and responsibility increases over the time, you want to show your progress and the trust your employers put in you.
- Cover letters: Be sure to personalize your cover letter. Hiring authorities reading resumes look for the ‘nitty gritty’, and browse the (usually form) letter attached so keep it short and to the point. Letters written directly about specific positions get read more often than the “To whom it may concern” forms. Hand written notes, if your writing is satisfactory, are fairly successful for many positions. If you feel that a hand written note in not appropriate, try to find the name of the person who will read the information or direct it at least to the firm or hiring authority for the advertisement number, if you are applying to a blind ad. Whatever you do, be sure to date the letter. An undated cover letter shows that you are broadcasting and not specifically interested in the targeted restaurant.
- “Objective” paragraphs: Not every resume needs a stated objective, especially if it is being sent for a specific position. A summary of qualifications is frequently a better idea, since it gives a short rundown of what makes you good. You can use an objective paragraph best when you have a very specific objective such as a position in an operation developing meal solutions or a rural location.
- Summary of qualifications: While bragging is not particularly effective on resumes, stating your various qualifications and certifications is may provide the readers with information they right at the start. If you specialize in a particular food, have a specifically strong knowledge of organizational systems or have considerable expertise or experience specialized areas such as OSHA or FDA or chocolate sculpture, you might want to lead in with a short paragraph.