How To Dumb Down an Overqualified Resume

Remember how hard you worked to be as good as you are? Practice a little humility to secure some short-term employment.


  • Step 1: Forego listing activities in your community and important positions. Dump the section on awards and recognitions.
  • Step 2: Illustrate your talent by combining bullets, allowing you to omit similar accomplishments altogether. But avoid seeming a dishonest or unreliable as a prospect.
  • FACT: Involuntary part-time worker numbers were at 9.2 million in November 2009.
  • Step 3: Avoid elaborate or flowery language in all matters on a resume, but especially if you don’t want to draw attention to your education, experience, former title, or pay.
  • Step 4: Limit accomplishments to your last 10 years to conceal the depth of your experience. Summarize anything earlier in a paragraph.
  • TIP: Most readers spend just a few seconds scanning each resume. Make sure you don’t call attention to something you’d rather not emphasize.
  • Step 5: Alter the perception by creating a functional resume. Under general headings, like "Technical" or "Transportation," stress transferable skills instead of titles and accomplishments.
  • Step 6: Downplay impressive numbers and results in an "Accomplishments" section so that they appear less substantial. Give only basic qualifications.
  • Step 7: Organize and design the chronological resume in plain text and short blocks of information no more than two lines each. List your degree at the end of the resume rather than the beginning.

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