Monday, December 24, 2007

Scented Resumes on Pink Paper? Only if you are Reese Witherspoon!

In the summer of 2006, I wrote a resume for a recent college grad looking for his first job. He had been advised to put his photo on his resume and it was not easy for me to convince him that was not a good idea. He wanted to print his resume on blue paper. Also not a good idea.
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After all, the only one who could get away with a pink, scented resume was Reese Witherspoon playing a law student, Elle Woods, in the movie Legally Blonde.
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In the end, he took my advice about the photo and the colored paper. He also landed a nice job in the business world.
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This month, I had the pleasure of working with this delightful, energetic, young professional again. He is being courted by another company and needed to update his resume. He brought up the photo issue again and told me he thought it was commonplace now in NYC. My response was that I was unaware of this new trend (I even called one of the NYC headhunters with whom I work, who confirmed my suspicions - NO PHOTOS).
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Earlier this week, I received an email from a representative of HR World (, referring me to a recent posting entitled, "25 Things You Should Never Include on a Resume " ( The list contains very basic, important information about "resume don'ts," some of which should be intuitive. I had to smile when I saw No. 14. Here is what was posted:
  • "14. Photograph: reports that hiring departments "legally cannot consider your picture in determining if you are to be interviewed, or hired," and that "many companies won't even consider résumés that are submitted with a picture to ensure that they are in compliance with [the Equal Opportunity Employer]" legislation. Keep in mind, however, that if you are applying for jobs overseas, photographs may be the norm on résumés."

I rest my case!

In regard to the other 24 listings about what not to put on your resume, I agree with most of them, but not with all. For example, the two that concern me the most are numbers 4 and 5. As most of you should know, the term is sexual orientation, not sexual preference, for no. 4. And for sexual orientation and religion, whether they would be placed on your resume would absolutely depend!

If you want to know more about my advice on those issues, feel free to contact me at 410-602-2500 or by email at:

Happy Holidays. Randi

Randi S. Lewis, Founder, Resume Boutique LLC,

© Resume Boutique LLC 2007. All rights reserved.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

An insightful post on "Scented Resumes on Pink Paper? Only if you are Reese Witherspoon!".An important point is a resume and cover letter should be the marketing tools that help candidate to land the position that is perfect for him.


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