Your resume matters! It’s the first piece of information a potential employer has about you, so it’s best to be honest and accurate. Unfortunately, in their eagerness to get a dream job, many applicants sometimes embellish or exaggerate their resumes—usually either in their job history or level of education. But those discrepancies can come back to bite you, and when that happens, you risk losing any chance of being hired. Or perhaps worse, you could later be fired from the job you misrepresented yourself to get. Here are three reasons it’s important to be completely honest and accurate on your resume.
Background checks will haunt you
Most employers complete thorough background checks, including a look into your references. Whether it’s a few erroneous dates, a mislabeled job title, or a specific project that you claim to have worked on, these facts are easy for employers to verify when they call a former supervisor. Even if it’s only a small discrepancy that’s discovered, you’ve jeopardized your credibility and reliability, and potential employers will start to wonder if there’s something larger and more serious you’ve been dishonest about.
You’ll be in over your head
If you inflate your abilities and can’t back it up once you start work, you’re setting yourself up for failure and you could be fired. Your new supervisors and co-workers will have expectations of you that you won’t be able to meet. This inconsistency will be more obvious than if you had just asked for help in learning how to tackle a new task. Whether they uncover your lie or they’re just disappointed with your poor performance, this is not a good first impression to make.
You’re cheating yourself
It’s exhausting and stressful to maintain a lie or to “fake it” on the job! You’d rather start at a new position with a clean slate where you can completely focus on taking in your new surroundings, trying to master your new tasks and responsibilities, and getting to know your co-workers. You shouldn’t also have to worry about keeping your story straight, covering your tracks, or compensating for your weaknesses.
We get it—job searches are stressful. But instead of succumbing to the pressure and being dishonest on your resume, make yourself stand out by putting your strongest attributes, experiences, and skills first. Mention your non-work related experience, such as volunteering, certifications you’ve earned, boards and committees you’ve served on, and relevant courses you’ve taken. Whether an inconsistency comes out in the interview process or after you’ve started your job, you don’t want these embellishments or misrepresentations coming back to haunt you.
For more help drafting the perfect resume that sets you apart from the competition, check out our website at https://www.chiefofstaffkc.com.
Blog written by Erin Greenhalgh