The backstory

Ah, Amazon. Sounds like the breeze flowing through the palm trees in Hawaii.

My client had a fairly sexy job developing applications for a Wall Street trading desk.  However, it wasn’t Amazon.  For many, Amazon is Amazon. This article discusses how we told his story on his resume that got him there.

The challenge

Amazon and AWS (we will refer to both here as “Amazon”) for many are the go-to firms for many financial services professionals, regardless of their job function. Across the board, bankers, finance managers, HR, IT, marketing, and business development professionals dream of Amazon.  I estimate half my clients want Amazon or Google.

Therefore, how do you craft a resume which reflects what Amazon wants to see?

The solution

Amazon wants to see well-rounded professionals that satisfy their 14 Leadership principles. When you create a resume for them, keep each principle in mind and craft content that provides examples of as many of the 14 as possible.

First, understand the basic idea of resume writing: Don’t document what you have done. Document what you have done that is most relevant to your next job and employer.  Think about your 10 greatest accomplishments from your current position and document them in detail. Have a friend read over the 14 principles and the job description of the Amazon position you want.

Then ask your friend to read over each accomplishment carefully and ask clarifying questions. They then score each accomplishment based on the number of principles that each one covers.  Your buddy then ranks your stories from highest to lowest.

Notice how we took you mostly out of the picture after you documented your accomplishments? You are not objective.

Together, discuss your 5 highest scoring accomplishments and build bullets around them.  From the ground up, you will build a castle with the Amazon flag flying atop.

My client’s challenge

My client had worked on a trading desk for the same institution for many years.  With many accomplishments providing traders the tools they needed to make money, my head was spinning.  He used various forms of machine learning and artificial intelligence to do Amazon things (typo intentional). How do you select the accomplishments to include on your resume?

Give Amazon what they wanted to see

First, we split up his current experience into 3 main “themes” which reflected his activities:

  • innovative technology
  • stakeholder management (including leadership)
  • core day-to-day activities

The themes reflected the idea that “I work on the complex high value add projects, managing all sorts of stakeholders as a leader, and get the day to day done”.  What else is there in a job?

We selected his best experiences and created bullets and sub-bullets that fit into the themes above. We managed to include 13 of the 14 principles across all 3 themes. A score of 13/14 or 92.85% got him in!

Email me at mike@mikemittleman.com if you want to know the missing one.

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