Three Ways to Improve Your Hedge Fund Resume

You may have heard it said that a good resume may not get you a job, but a bad resume can lose one for you because a bad resume will keep you from getting through the door.  Where hedge funds are concerned, even a mediocre resume can keep you wandering in the wilderness.  Here are some tips to help you create a resume that will rise to the top of the pile.

First, do no harm.

Always get a second and a third pair of eyes to check for grammar and spelling.  You are applying for a job that requires meticulous attention to detail.  A resume with even the smallest error says a lot about you—and none of it good!

In addition to checking for errors, check for consistency.  Be sure that your headings match, that you have listed dates consistently, that indentations are the same.  Use the same font for the same types of entries.  Don’t use bold print for a company title under one entry and italics for a company title under another.

Second, prove you have the goods.

Show you have deep industry knowledge.  If you were a banker, show the level of depth of knowledge in the industry with examples.  For example:  I researched over 50 companies as acquisition targets in the media industry and spent 6 months conducting due diligence on the top 10 candidates that were narrowed down by valuation and strength of business model.

Show that you can think outside the box.  Indicate how you encountered a tough problem, how you didn’t take no for an answer but instead found a way to make it work.

Make sure you don’t leave any gaps in time.  If you took time out to go back to school, say so.  If you were laid off for six months, fill in that time with the outstanding volunteer work you did for the Small Business Association or creating a program for an inner city high school business club.  Something.

Make sure the resume flows.  A resume should not be a random collection of facts.  It should tell a story about you in an interesting, logical way.

Third, rise to the top.

You know it.  There are thousands of resumes in the pile.  If you want yours to be noticed, you must do something to make yours stand out. It would be great if you have actually done something unusual or outstanding, and if you have, be sure that you highlight it appropriately.

And most important, make certain that your highlights can be read in 20 seconds.  Test your friends.  Give them your resume for 30 seconds and then take it away.  What can they remember?  If they can’t remember your highlights, then neither will anyone else.

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