The Startup Resume

For many of us, our resumes are currency. Most things we do, in a business sense, depend on those small pieces of paper. Every time we apply for a job, we do our best to sell ourselves. Every time we have a career gap, we worry about how we’re going to cover it. But, when you go it alone, what your resume says ceases to matter. You no longer have to sell yourself to a big boss or go up against other candidates. Instead, it’s all down to you. But, that doesn’t mean you can forget about your credentials altogether. We’re going to look at the resume you need to master for starting your own business.

For the most part an employer will look for experience above all. The amount of time you’ve spent working in your field often tops qualifications in the importance stakes. But, don’t think experience becomes irrelevant when you’re going it alone. It may be true that you no longer have a boss to answer to, but you owe it to yourself to start on the right footing. Knowing what you’re doing will make your life an awful lot easier. And, it will boost your chances of success. It may be that your business enterprise fits with the work you were doing before. If that’s the case, it should be full steam ahead. Your years in the industry will have taught you a lot about how things work. But, if you’re branching into an area you’ve never worked in, things may be a little harder. It could be worth holding fire while you work for a year or so in your chosen field. This will allow you to gain experience, and show you whether it’s something you do want to pursue. It can also help to turn to any business contacts with the know-how. They’ll be able to advise you about what it takes to go far.
Qualifications aren’t as big an issue, but they’re still worth some consideration. Though, the role they play does shift when you’re going it alone. For the most part, few qualifications can top experience in the field. But, that doesn’t mean qualifications become obsolete. Instead, it may be worth focusing on a management specific course. For example, instead of studying a course solely aimed at engineering, you could turn to an engineering management masters online. That way, you can gain the business know how to go alongside your practical experience. Studying online also means that you don’t have to take time out of starting up. A gap is, after all, still a gap. Being able to study while still getting down to work is the best way to keep yourself motivated. Qualifications can also be a help in gaining respect within your field. While you’ve taken a boss out of the equation, you still need to be able to impress. Most people will be happier doing business with someone who’s got credentials to their name.