Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter discusses the importance of keeping your resume up to date even after you start a new job.

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Right now, you are aggressively looking for work but I want to plant a seed with you. You're going to find a job; it may not happen as soon as you like but you are gonna find a job.

Normally, in human nature seems to suggest that you exhale deeply and relax and you stop being open to other things.

If the recession has taught you anything it is that you need to be prepared at all times because you never know when you'll need to look for work again.

Even if you're happy, you never know when you'll find the right opportunity land in your lap with someone calling up and saying, "I've got this great opportunity; we talked for a few minutes."

My encouragement for you is to maintain an up-to-date resume. Every three or four months, sit down with yourself, take about 30 to 40 minutes, and jot down some notes about what you've accomplished during the previous three months.

This serves a couple of purposes. First, if you remained with your organization for years, great! During that time, you will get reviewed. Sometimes people are reviewed by new hiring managers or new managers have just taken over a group and don't really know what the person has done over the year.

Some people freak out under those circumstances and panic. They are ill prepared for the review meeting and this will allow you to be prepared. Again, it's a habit. Set an alarm in your phone or in Outlook. Set it up in a way that every few months you sit down with yourself, write down what you've done and update your resume.

Next, if you get that proverbial knock on the door on the shoulder that says, "I've got a great opportunity," you aren't starting at that point trying to construct a resume you might be busy or anxious.

Again, someone's knocking on your door or tap you on the shoulder; you don't want to stand be writing the resume because love other things on your plate. Better to be ready at that point because you've been doing your homework assignment and have treated yourself like a business of one, looking out for your interests, just like your employer is looking out for their interests.

You always want to be ready for that tap on the shoulder so that you are not then taking a few days to write your resume and risk losing out on an opportunity.

The fact of the matter is, if you say you're going to take a day or two to write that resume, the next person who is called may not be taking a day or two. They may be getting in the door ahead of you, creating a great impression and locking you out of an opportunity.

Do yourself a favor. When you lay on this job, set up an alarm in your phone, in Outlook, or whatever system you use to remind you that every 3 to 4 months you take the time to update your resume so that it is no big production when you need one.


Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a career and leadership coach who worked as a recruiter for what more than 40 years. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with more than 1100 episodes, “Job Search Radio,” “and his newest show, “No BS Coaching Advice” and is a member of The Forbes Coaches Council.

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Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter

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