When applying for management positions, listing your skills on your resume won’t automatically win you the job. Instead, you must describe how you can handle the challenges unique to overseeing a department or staff. You must also provide concrete evidence that hiring you will benefit everything from employee morale to productivity.
Give Concrete Examples
Hiring managers need substantial proof that bringing you on board will serve the company well. They also want to make sure that you won’t make them look bad by not living up to expectations. Instead of relying on your previous job titles to speak for you, provide detailed examples and anecdotes to back up your claims. If you’re emphasizing your problem-solving skills, describe a time when your team faced a tight deadline or insufficient resources and discuss the steps you took to overcome those obstacles.
Emphasize the Bottom Line
It’s often the manager who is responsible for staying within budget or boosting profits, so draw the employer’s attention to the financial benefits of hiring you. For example, describe how you reduced production costs at your last company by 15 percent. Or, discuss how you increased employee retention by 20 percent, significantly reducing the expense associated with recruiting and training new employees. Demonstrate your understanding of the financial constraints facing companies by explaining how you trimmed expenses to prevent layoffs or massive cuts within your department. Describing how your management skills can save the company money will make you stand out in an interview.
Focus on Results
Employers want managers who can get things done. After all, as the manager you’ll be responsible for motivating employees, finding and managing resources, and helping the department achieve its goals. Demonstrate how you’ve produced results at your previous jobs. For example, discuss how you launched an initiative to streamline production processes, saving time and reducing errors. Be specific about the impact your efforts had on the company, noting exact percentages and dollar amounts.
Research the company before you submit your resume or attend an interview, paying close attention to its current goals and challenges. Develop a solution for one or two of these circumstances and explain step-by-step how you would implement it. For example, if the company wants to make over its image and improve customer relations, describe how you would evaluate the source of customer dissatisfaction. Discuss how you would identify specific, actionable ways to resolve the problem and how you would instruct employees on what they can do to keep customers happy and enhance the company’s reputation.