In the past, including your home address on your resume was a formality that readers expected to see. But today, it’s no longer necessary, at least in the U.S. There are good reasons you might want to leave your home address off your resume. Your commute could be a concern Having your address on your […]

Executive LinkedIn profiles are not private

There’s a misconception I hear from executives sometimes. They tell me, “I have my LinkedIn profile ‘set to private’ for now,” and they explain it’s so their boss won’t see it, or so nobody will see it until it’s perfectly worded. Another one I’ve heard is “I don’t want my boss to know I’m on […]

job search samples

You might have heard that sharing examples of your work could be helpful when you’re interviewing. But is it really a good idea? How do you decide whether to share? In some professions—like journalism—sharing a portfolio of your work is a critical part of the hiring process and is usually part of the initial application […]


A colleague you’ve been friends with for years is ready to move up in his career. Or, he’s scared because of a looming layoff. Whatever the scenario might be, you want to help. In that vein, you share some tips, offer to serve as a reference, and even send him the shiny new executive resume […]

hidden job market

You’ve probably seen or heard the term “hidden job market” at some point. It gets used a lot, but you might be wondering what it truly means—and it doesn’t help that there’s no official or standard definition. The lack of an official definition means that various sources have different explanations—sometimes misleading. Then, there’s people who […]


Posting on LinkedIn is a good way to maintain “top-of-mind awareness” with your professional contacts. It also provides evidence that your profile is current when recruiters and others view it. The WHY of LinkedIn posting is fairly clear, but WHAT to post is a bit more complex. Here are the five types of posts I […]


One of the things I always ask clients to brainstorm at the start of our process is “SAR stories,” which will give us the ideal raw ingredients for your resume, LinkedIn profile, and job interviews. SAR is an acronym for a type of success story; it stands for: S – Situation A – Action R […]

Your new executive resume is done, and it’s a masterpiece. I can understand wanting to unleash the power of this resume, but please do yourself a favor and don’t upload it to your LinkedIn profile. To be clear: what I’m talking about has nothing to do with your LinkedIn profile writing (job descriptions, About section, […]

Artificial intelligence (AI) is truly woven into the fabrics of our lives, including job search. Most mid-sized to large employers are using technology and AI tools in the recruiting and hiring processes, and there are also tools that job seekers can take advantage of, as well. For example, one such tool that I introduce my […]

When you’re in the job market and the phone rings, it’s impossible not to wonder if it’s a recruiter or employer–especially if the area code matches an employer you’re interested in. Answering the phone right away would seem to be the best option, but not so fast! What could go wrong? Noise and distractions Take […]

Job search networking by phone (businessman talking on phone)

Building relationships does NOT have to take place in person. This has always been the case, and it’s especially true now that remote work has become more common and executives have embraced digital tools more than ever. However, many executives still associate the word “networking” with face-to-face interactions. I often hesitate to use that word, […]

Research from Microsoft revealed in 2015 that the average attention span had dropped from 12 seconds to a mere 8 seconds. That means that when someone asks you what you do, or you’re writing your LinkedIn summary, or sending a self-introduction to a recruiter, you’d better be able to get the person interested QUICKLY. What […]

About one-third of my clients come to me with LinkedIn profiles and resumes that don’t list all the job titles they’ve held at a particular company. For example: John was hired as Sr. Director – Supply Chain Management at a $5B multi-national company. After only 4 months, he was promoted to VP – Supply Chain […]

I’ve heard it so many different times from clients in all different fields, from logistics to marketing to nursing: “Well, I never thought about doing this before, but they found my resume online and they really want me–they said I’d be great!” After hearing this from a lot of different clients over the years, I […]

I’ve been working remotely for well over a decade now, so to me it seems like the most natural way to work–but I’m realizing that for a lot of people it takes some getting used to. Based on personal experience and what I’ve heard from clients, friends, media articles, and questions I’ve gotten over the […]

Executive CV Writing

Many of the clients I work with aren’t sure what a CV is, or aren’t sure of the difference between an executive resume (or any resume) and a CV. It can be a thorny issue, so let’s delve in! First, let’s get one thing out of the way: a CV is not a cover letter! […]

If you’re like most of my clients, you might be a member of a half dozen or dozen LinkedIn groups. I’d argue that you should join more than that, even if you don’t plan to participate in discussions in the groups. Now that LinkedIn allows users to join up to 100 groups, why not join […]

It usually happens about once a week or so: someone will approach me inquiring about my services and I end up referring them to an industry colleague (ie., competitor). There are many reasons for these referrals that all boil down to the client not being the best fit at that point in time: Not having […]

While putting the finishing touches on a resume or LinkedIn profile, some of my clients get feedback on the documents–some of it solicited, some of it unsolicited. Over the years, I’ve found that this feedback runs the gamut; some is helpful, some is “happy to glad,” and some is out-of-touch. “Happy-to-glad” feedback Some of the […]

Most savvy executives nowadays have embraced the model of servant leadership–rather than being authoritarian bosses their teams are afraid of, they actually listen, use the power of persuasion to influence others, and work to lift up their team members (among other things). This style of leadership requires humility. In general, this is a good thing–putting […]

Hi! I’m Kelly Donovan

The job search arena is changing all the time, from new resume trends to what works best in the current job market–and managing your online presence has never been more important. My blog is the place for information, insight, and best practices to help you land faster, earn more, and love your work!

About Kelly Donovan

Kelly works with job seekers nationwide, primarily executives. She has been featured on the CBS TV show Face the Truth, and her career advice has been featured in/on Forbes, Fast Company, Reader’s Digest, Business Insider, Entrepreneur, New York Post, Glassdoor, and many more.

She has been a contributor to three books (including “Resumes for Dummies”), and she has earned certifications in job search coaching, resume writing, LinkedIn, and interview preparation. Full bio