How to build a professional executive resume?

As an executive, you are a natural leader, not afraid of having a plate full of managerial tasks. It has taken your blood, sweat and tears to successfully climb the corporate ladder.

Now when you are on top, it seems like a piece of cake for you to create goals for a company, and ensure they are reached.

You have confidently submitted your executive resume to a top-notch company.

However, no one is giving you a call back. If you ask why, you may find it a bitter pill to swallow, but your CV might be underperforming.

Luckily, the following tips will help you build an appealing, hard-to-turn-down executive resume.

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1. Must-haves to include in your contact information section

Make it simple. Avoid oversharing and never include sensitive data.

Your header should contain your name, phone number, email and professional social media links, such as LinkedIn or Twitter.

Make sure to update your social media account information, and tailor it to the executive position you are applying for.
 

2. Create an impressive professional summary for your executive CV

Many candidates mention a variety of general job duties, making their professional summaries unnecessarily long. Do not be those candidates.

Your professional profile should be relevant, brief and filled with important keywords from the job posting.

Market yourself, making it a smooth combination of your best work experience, measurable accomplishments and exceptional executive skills. 

Executive professional summary example

Enthusiastic senior-level sales executive with 13+ years of experience in real estate. Highly effective at exceeding sales quotas, increased total sales by 17% within 8 months through networking and social media. Skillfully monitored the property market to identify clients’ needs, securing 87 brokering deals within a year.

 

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3. The best skills for your executive resume

When it comes to applying for an executive role, the bar is undoubtedly set high, and so there is nothing left for you but to exceed the hiring manager’s expectations.

What if your potential employer required a focused person who makes prompt decisions in relatively difficult situations? Well, your skill set would probably include agility, effective decision-making, and ability to work well under pressure.

Prepare the best possible competencies for your executive CV, tailoring your soft and hard skill-sets to the job posting.

The following lists will help you compile your executive skills sections in no time.

The most effective soft skills for your executive resume

  • Senior Leadership
  • Outstanding Communication
  • Critical Thinking
  • Change Management Skills
  • Problem Solving
  • Confidence
  • Effective Decision Making
  • Agility
  • Integrity
  • Ability to Work Well Under Pressure
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Delegation

 

The best executive hard skills for your CV

  • IT Skills
  • Legal Knowledge
  • Relationship Building
  • Methodology
  • Budgeting & Finance
  • Strategic Planning
  • Presentation Skills
  • Negotiation
  • Scheduling
  • New Business Development


4. Write a winning work experience section for your executive resume

Pull out all the stops to make your prospective employer feel like your past work experience is a vision of their company’s future success.

The following tips will help you compile an enthralling work experience section:

  • Make your career trajectory clear by listing your work history in a reverse chronological order, starting with the most recent role.
  • Use the bullet points, avoiding large chunks of text.
  • Be transparent about whom you worked for.
  • Use keywords from the job posting, tailoring your executive work experience section to the job you are applying for.
  • Quantify your accomplishments. Statistically, the best resumes are those with measurable achievements.
  • Avoid mentioning dry job details that might repel the recruiter from reading the rest of your CV.

Executive work experience section example

Stenson Real Estate, Texas
Sales Executive
2017–2020

  • Oversaw 30+ real estate agents and spearheaded the promotion of property sales.
  • Increased total sales by 17% within 8 months through improved networking and social media plan.
  • Skillfully monitored the property market to identify Stenson clients’ needs, securing 87 brokering deals within a year.
  • Set up a partnership with Moxtra Real Estate Management System that saved the company $2 million in licensing fees over a two-year period. 


5. Make your executive resume shine with an impeccable education section

Just like your work experience section, your education information should be transparent. If you have not completed a degree, let the recruiter know about your status.

Whether you have finished your studies or not, you can make your education section stand out by mentioning your areas of interest, relevant coursework or accomplishments.

Listing education in your executive resume

University of Europe
Master of Business Administration
2010–2013

  • Area of interest: Innovation and Entrepreneurship
  • Excelled in Performance Measurement
  • Relevant Coursework: Leadership, Strategic Management, Legal Environment of Business, Business Management, Financial Analysis, Innovation & Management, Corporate Finance 


6. The most suitable additional sections for your executive resume

Depending on the job you are applying for, your choice of extra sections can certainly make a difference.

You may opt for relevant certifications, interests that reveal your leadership competencies, or projects that prove your strategic skills.

Last but not least, your volunteering activities in a nonprofit organization may convey your social awareness, and ability to establish relationships with people from an array of different backgrounds.

The following list may help you pick the most suited extra sections for your executive resume:

  • Language Skills
  • Conferences
  • Volunteering Activities
  • Certifications
  • Awards and Recognition
  • Projects
  • Qualifications
  • Interests
  • Other Accomplishments
     

Listing extra sections in your executive CV

Certifications

  • Project Management Certification (PMP), Rome 2019

Volunteering Activities

  • Volunteer, Home and Heart Shelters, Austin, January 2019 – March 2020 
    • Prepared and delivered meals to over 150 people in need per day.
    • Planned and organized monthly charity events, where over $5,000 were raised.

 

Published on Dec. 7, 2021

Julia is a professional writer, translator and graphic designer. She holds degrees in translation and interpretation, and has international work experience from a number of different countries in Europe as well as China and Panama. Julia formerly taught academic writing and as a graphic designer contributed to outlets such as The Business of Business. She has a passion for lifelong learning and good coffee.

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