Being specific with special skills, accents, and hobbies is crucial when you’re in the running for a specialized gig. Having “Horseback Riding” on your resume might help you get booked on a shoot taking place on a farm, but you will likely be passed over for opportunities where clients need rodeo riders, dressage, or English trained riders. You may think horseback riding on your resume means you can ride English, but the client may not have the time to ask questions if they have another similarly qualified talent with “English Riding” and “Dressage” on their resume. Productions move fast and the talent’s materials have to keep up with the quick pace in order to be a part of it.
Some common generalizations that we see on resumes which cause talent to lose opportunities in a rush:
- Yoga. There are many types and many positions. Which ones can you nail confidently and quickly?
- Dance. This could mean anything. Do you shake it in the club with your friends or are you a highly skilled professional dancer? Are we talking Ballet, Tap, Hip Hop, Line? The client needing to find someone who does point isn’t going to ask everyone with “dance” on their resume if they are able to do point. The one talent with “Ballet, point” on his/her resume will get the opportunity.
- Drivers License. Do you drive standard? Do you have special licenses to drive tractor trailers, etc.?
- Sing. Are we supposed to think country? Opera? Yodeling? Is your range exceptionally low or high?
- Sports. There are some sports that need more information than just “football”. Are you the quarterback?
- Gymnastics. One person may think back bends while another pictures you on a balance beam.
Look over your resume’s special skills and hobbies with fresh eyes and decide if they are notated as specifically as we need them to be. If we have to ask questions about what something means, it’s not clear enough. Be specific and set yourself up to be ready for all the opening doors and opportunities to use the skills that make you special!