Resume Boot Camp: 3 common mistakes people make

Ramit Sethi

In college, most people use their free time to drink, watch sports, or make lewd comments about women.

By contrast, I quietly and systematically polished my resume for over 100 man-hours in college until it gleamed perfection. I know, I know…this is what makes me irresistible to women.

Anyway, a few months back, I got in touch with Brazen Careerist to do some co-promotion since we both have similar audiences. But I’ve held off on mentioning them until the right thing came along.

Tonight Penelope Trunk (of Brazen Careerist) is doing a “Resume Boot Camp” webcast — Wednesday, 2/10 — and I thought you guys might want to check it out.

I recently took a look at some of your resumes for an upcoming project, and they were just terrible. I wish I had time to fix every one of them, but hopefully this will help you get a good start.

It’s tonight: Get details about the free Resume Boot Camp (Wed 2/10)

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  1. Maren Kate

    I’m in 🙂 thanks for the great content!

  2. Alfonso

    I already signed up but the hour is a no no for me… I’m 9 time zones away!
    Do you know if it will be recorded?

    Thank you!

  3. Ken Siew

    Great stuffs I’m in! I also put in many hours polishing my own resume in college, but I’m sure I’ll learn more in this webcast. Thanks.

  4. Ryan Paugh

    Hey Guys,

    Glad you can make it! For those of you who can’t, we’re going to do our best to record this week. At the very least, the great people over at (the service we use to broadcast) have been putting together some great highlight reels for us.

    If you register for tonight’s Resume Boot Camp, we’ll send you all of the footage that we have available.

    If you have any last-minute questions I’m available via email at

  5. DJ

    Sounds great! I think everyone can always use a good resume critique.

  6. Anca

    I saw Penelope Trunk’s tweet about this but I ignored it. Your post, however, managed to reach through the computer screen, grab me and shake me yelling “you need this!”. So I signed up. 🙂

  7. Ian Rogers

    Sure hope you can record this one…won’t be able to make it! Seems like a good backup plan/course for entrepreneurs. Even though I’m self employed I think it would be great to learn some new skills and get the ol’ resume ready in case something bad happens!

  8. Lincoln

    Great stuff. I’ll let my list know about the next one.

  9. ben Roberts

    signed up but on the other side of the world it was lunch time and i was watching it on a public computer in a shopping centre but cut out after 20min,

    i would love a recorded video or a transcript or summary if its available

  10. Amy

    Actually, most people in college ARE women. So I doubt that most people in college make lewd comments about them.

  11. Ainee Beland

    Ramit Sethi,

    Keep up the good work. I am a fan, tad slow but right there with you.

  12. Matty C

    This is perfect timing for me!

    I, like Ramit spent much of my time polishing and rewriting my resume over the past couple of years (but not really 100 hours…I did try to pick up girls in college).

    I’ve jumped from job to job since I graduated, never staying for more than 2 years, and always getting decent raises in the process. Over the past year or so, I’ve been helping many of my friends get their resumes together. Long story short, after following Ramit’s advice for saving and automation, I took a crack at starting a resume writing service a few weeks ago, and I already got my first 3 paying clients! Click on my name if you want to check it out. Also, if you have any constructive criticism about the site, please shoot me an email and let me have it 🙂

  13. Patrick Dickey

    I didn’t see this until I received it in my e-mail this morning. Hopefully they’ll have it recorded, so I can watch it later. Otherwise, I guess I’ll have to wait for the next round of bootcamps.

    Have a great day:)

  14. Meg

    The email showed up this morning with today’s date on it. What is up with that?!

    Was it recorded?

  15. Joshua Goa

    Thanks for the advice…….

  16. Austin

    Hey There Ramit,

    My Founder ( and I were discussing your thought leadership and his thought leadership. He is always looking for ways to innovate or cut the fat of his effort to make his content rich and his effort low, both things that we suspect you care about. Especially since you’re all about outsourcing the BS you couldn’t care less about doing (cooking, for example).

    Jonas and I have a breakfast taco bet: On your StrengthsFinder, was “Maximizer” near the top?

    • Ramit Sethi

      What is Strengthsfinder? I don’t know anything about that.

  17. Austin

    It was in the Slides for Earn1k today on Picking your Field.

    What’s engaging about the test is not just that it helps you identify areas that you already are strong in. It also encourages you to avoid working to strengthen your weaknesses, since if you put the same hard work into the things you are strong in, you’ll fare better in the long run. You’ll enjoy LIFE more.

    What’s more, the book has a structure of recommendations for key strength matchups. I have Woo and Activation at the top of my strengths. I can make a lot of things happen, and sell people on new ideas, but it’s a great idea for me to pair with someone Strategic who can structure my nebula of energy.

    If you have a chance, the test would be interesting, esp. since it’s in your curriculum.