5 Accomplishments to Make your Business Manager Resume Stand Out

If you google "manager resume template", you'll find a lot of resume models filled with roles and responsibilities such as:

  • Consolidate all inputs, including OPEX and Bad Debt and present full MTP to B2B leadership team for review and sign-off.
  • Analyze B2B's internal portfolio evolution to identify strengths and weaknesses.
  • Maintain regular liaison with Sales and Marketing to understand competitive position.
  • Led the development of pricing and contracting strategy for the business unit.
  • Planned, supervised, and coordinated daily activity of 4 senior business analysts.
  • Performed contract review and implementation of rebate agreements.

That seems about right, no?

But there's a problem. A huge problem, actually. Most business managers with whom you'll be competing will have similar roles and responsibilities on their resumes. Leading small teams, managing various projects, coordinating with other departments, planning and supervising... These tasks are pretty much what being a business manager is all about. There are differences here and there, but roles and responsibilities will often overlap. So if your resume is very close to a typical "manager resume template", how is that helping you get interviews? After all, the best resumes are distinctive. They make you stand out, not blend in!

So here's a little something to help you make your resume stand out. It's based on the 3 Laws of Resume Writing. (Accomplishments, accomplishments and accomplishments!) And it's not material that I made up. I found it by carefully studying the resumes of various managers (focusing on the best ones, of course!).

5 Business Manager Accomplishments to Make your Resume Distinctive

  1. Led payment collection effort by correcting over 15,000 invoices and negotiating payment plan with supermarkets which reduced bad debt by 90%. (Reducing bad debt by such a margin has clear, positive bottom-line impact, which will resonate with any potential employer.)
  2. Executively sponsored a Lean Sigma project moving all customer support in-house (formerly managed by a third party), saving $500K annually. (As a manager, present as many results as possible with clear, measurable financial impact. Put in the extra effort to find actual figures, even if they're approximative.)
  3. Established a risk management practice in the Global Network Services team. Directed the creation and implementation of a Business Continuity Plan, SOX compliance, and the management of audit programs. (As a business manager, leading a small team isn't "going above and beyond"; it's a normal responsibility. However, adding new arms to the business shows your value.)
  4. Responsible for raising sub-performing SLA's to best in network in 6 months. (Solving a problem or overcoming an obstacle demonstrates your dedication to your company and a desire to improve the processes you're responsible for.)
  5. Initiated and led supply chain improvements and business platform development to support the enterprise, channel business and government accounts to achieve significant profitability, ...(Whenever you initiate something, it demonstrates a state of mind of proactivity and dynamism. If you're behind any sort of "first", make sure your resume highlights it!)

The benefit is the key component of each accomplishment: improved operations, more money, demonstrated leadership and reliability, ... Accomplishments like these are the most critical pieces of your resume. Now read that last sentence again, because that's the best resume advice you'll get this month.

If you're a fantastic employee but your resume is silent on many of your accomplishments, you'll end up behind a good employee whose accomplishments are all clearly laid out.

And for that matter, an average employee with weak accomplishments better know how to network, since the resume alone won't pull its weight. (Actually, networking skills are critical to everyone's job hunt. But let's stick with the topic, if you don't mind.)

Accomplishments are where it's at. When you solve a problem, reduce costs, make something better/simpler/faster, when you show initiative, it has to be on your resume, without being drowned out by too many roles and responsibilities (i.e. the "we've-all-done-it" resume template material). In my view, half of the energy and time spent on your resume should be focused on your accomplishments. To write good accomplishments, you need to think of what your potential employer is thinking about (problems solved, better results, and so on) and emphasize that. If you go through 20 resumes of your peers, you'll certainly find great accomplishments that you could adapt on your resume. I truly believe that is time well spent.

Many More Accomplishments, Just for You

However, I've already done that research... The 5 ideas above are just a glimpse of the full list of accomplishments I've assembled. If you'd like that well-rounded, unique list of real-world business manager accomplishments, for just a few dollars, check out our e-book, Business Manager Resume Hacking, on Amazon. You can read it even if you don't have a Kindle device.