Bragging on Your Resume is OK (and expected!)

Are you bragging about yourself enough on your Healthcare IT resume? I don’t mean being fictitious or acting as an expert for something you’ve only done once, but more in a way of, ‘I excel at this and THAT is why you should hire me’.

One of the main things I notice with my clients and their existing resumes is that they don’t BRAG enough about their accomplishments. They don’t talk enough about what they’ve done above and beyond their daily responsibilities.

My data-mining system is C.A.R.-oriented. The C.A.R. methodology is this:  Challenge, Action, Results. What Challenge did you face? What Action did you take to rectify it? And lastly, what were the Results? It is a very accomplishment-focused method and works very well in pulling you’re your accomplishments in an open-ended way. When I discuss this methodology with clients and ask them to sit down and write out their C.A.R. stories, I am amazed at the achievements that come pouring out. Many of us were raised to be humble about our accomplishments, not to be boastful. Remember, though, if you don’t let the reader know of what you’ve done, then why would they hire you? How do you stand out from the pile of candidates? You have to SELL YOURSELF.

Here are a few tips about bragging in a non-obnoxious way to get yourself noticed:

1) List your daily responsibilities clearly in your narrative under the job title. Even the ones you think aren’t worth being mentioned. If there are too many for more than a 5 or 6 line paragraph, then summarize.

2) Think of each task you did in that made a difference, something you were praised for, something that saved the company money. Readers LOVE to hear how you ‘saved JonesHealth money by doing XYZ’ or ‘drove revenue by 43% after doing XYZ’, etc. For example: “Currently implementing a new medical records system that will eliminate duplication, decrease errors, increase efficiency, and save MedXCompany $45,000/year”.

3) Add the accomplishment, even if it has a negative undertone or you were fighting challenging conditions. For example: “Despite negative sales growth in Michigan’s harsh economic climate, met the challenge of producing positive top line growth successfully while managing net revenue and contributing to margin gains”.

See how this one sounded? Even though my client struggled the last 2 years and saw a -2.2% sales decrease, to her company this was a good thing because of Michigan’s dismal economic climate and that their competition was faring much worse.

4) Your resume is the place to SELL YOURSELF. You are the product. What would you buy? The new ‘OKAY’ car model that has all the basics and does it’s job but has nothing super special about it? Or would you buy the ‘WOW, THIS CAR IS AWESOME’ car that is fully loaded, has a mini fridge in the dash, and wings to automatically make you airborne if traffic looks too heavy? The ‘WOW’ car may cost you a bit more, but isn’t it worth it? You have to sell yourself and turn yourself into the ‘WOW’ car. You have what it takes, you just need to put it on paper.

I hope this helps you rethink that bland little ‘OK’ statement, “streamlined processes and increased productivity” with something more ‘WOW!’. Let’s face it, we all want the WOW! car.

So does the employer.

About the author


Erin Kennedy

Erin Kennedy, CPRW, CERW, BS/HR, is a Certified Professional Resume Writer/Career Consultant, and the President of Professional Resume Services. She is a nationally published writer and contributor of nine best-selling career books.

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