April 1, 2019
What’s Your Story? Resume Writing Tips for Insurance Professionals
by Kris Gibson
What’s Your Story?
The most common question is, “What Am I Supposed to Write?” Our team’s most common response is, “Tell Your Story.” A resume highlights your skills and clearly states your career interests. It’s a narrative that describes:
- Who you are as a professional
- What you’ve accomplished
- Where you want to be moving forward
- How you can successfully impact an organization
On average, employers take only six seconds to scan a resume. The need to concisely communicate your skills and experience makes the difference between landing an interviewing or landing in the trash.
RESUME WRITING- Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Should my resume be just one page?
A: While wanting it to be concise, never limit yourself. If all of the pertinent information you want to share spills onto a second page that is not a problem at all. As an insurance professional, you should expect two pages because of all the specific, technical information you can include.
- Product expertise
- Market knowledge
- Size and scope of clients
- Leadership experience
- Systems exposure
- Carrier, broker and third-party relationships
Q: I have recently moved and it had been difficult finding work. What can I do to enhance my resume?
A: The key is to make sure you write an accomplishment resume as opposed to a job-description resume. Focus on what you specifically achieved that you can recreate for another employer. What did you do that was unique, special, different, or distinctive?
Q: How should I list education, professional training and designations?
A: Education, professional designations, industry certifications and published articles should always be listed but refrain from listing proprietary/employer specific training that holds no relevancy to other firms. If your resume starts to look like you’re listing every letter in the alphabet (behind your name or at the bottom of the document), you should create a supplemental document that can be provided to employers upon request.
Q: Should I include short-term, contract or consulting arrangements?
A: Even though it may not look the most flattering, listing a short stint with an employer or a less than permanent position is better than a gap. Insurance is a small world, and even if the company doesn’t run a background check your previous connection to a firm not listed on resume could surface in other conversations. To avoid the appearance of dishonesty, include all of your work history broken into sections. Keep it chronological but have a header for permanent positions, contract assignments and consulting arrangements.