How do I make a gap in my resume sound better? I took some time off between college and grad school. I supported myself by pet sitting, dog walking, obedience training, exercising horses, and occasionally giving horseback riding lessons. Now I’m applying for a “real” job and many of the applications want me to account for all my time, and explain any periods of unemployment. I definitely don’t want to list this time as being unemployed or doing odd jobs. Is there a way to spin this as a business?
Yes. Do NOT mention all those random things. Pick the one that is most impressive or most relevant to the jobs you are now applying to. Play that up, even if it hardly made any money. So, maybe that’s the obedience training. Go back and retrospectively give that business a name. You weren’t a person giving lessons, you were the president of Savvy Dog Obedience Training (um, I’m assuming we’re talking about dogs).
Now write a resume description in which you downplay the actual parts with dogs, and talk up the parts about getting clients, handling billing and customer service, and marketing your business. Then, prepare answers to interview “questions” like, “Dogs! That’s crazy!” and “How do you think you’d handle the transition to working with people?” and, less stupidly, “Why did you quit your business?”
A super great answer would be something like, “Actually, I didn’t quit so much as sell my client list so I could move on to something more ambitious.”
Originally on DailyBull, Get Bullish’s official Tumblr.