Marketers know the power of third-party testimonials. You see them all the time in TV ads and on websites. People claiming that this computer learning CD, or washing powder brand or cell phone changed their life. They're ubiquitous because they work. We are all nervous about plonking down cash for something untested - hearing from someone else who has tried it is a powerful persuasive tool.
Why not use the same technique on your resume?
Do you have a great performance review, or a glowing reference letter, or a thank-you letter from a happy customer? If so, consider pulling a quote or two and adding them to your resume.
I just finished a resume for a client where I used this technique. In his introduction, I extolled his virtues in pithy language and created an easy-to-read skills summary, but none of my words were as persuasive as this quote from his former boss (who agreed to have his name used on the resume):
"I was devastated when staffing cuts meant I had to let David go. I did everything I could to prevent it from happening because he is the best assistant manager I have ever worked with. He's a strong leader and a real go-getter and he never seems to get discouraged no matter how tough things get. Hire David! you won't regret it. Feel free to call me for more information."
We then included his name, title, company and phone number so that readers could see this was a real person and not just made-up quote.
My client is thrilled at the response rate to his new resume because he had been getting nowhere previously. Some of it has to do with the new structure and the correct presentation of his background, but I'm willing to bet a large amount of credit goes to that one short quote right in the middle of page one.