Should You Include an Objective on Your Resume?

Daily inspiration and advice for the ambitious savvy young professional
Should You Include an Objective on Your Resume? blog image

Should You Include an Objective on Your Resume?

It’s hard to even think about fall internships – as we just started summer internships – but with the start of July comes the start of the search for the perfect fall internship. I got a note from a reader last night asking me when to include and when not to include an objective on her resume. Here are some thoughts that I wanted to share:

1.      You do NOT include an objective statement if it’s going to pigeonhole you. Usually, internships are somewhat “general” -- you might be an “entertainment intern” at a network or a “TV intern.” They might not have a “TV Reporter” position and you don’t want to make the internship coordinator think you wouldn’t be interested in an entertainment-type position. You want to be well-rounded in your field.

2.      You do NOT include an objective statement when applying to intern for a small business with one posting. In this case, the objective would be unnecessary.

3.      If you DO include an objective statement, don’t fill your objective with adjectives. Your objective (if you decide to include) should be clear and to the point. It shouldn’t list a bunch of adjectives describing your personality or skillset. You’ll include your unique skillset in the body of your resume.

4.      You DO include an objective statement if the company offers several specific internship positions. If the company you are applying for has specific types of internships within their business (and you are sure of this), you can state in the objective which position you are applying for. For example: social media internship, graphic design internship.

5.      You DO include an objective statement if the job is outside of your major. If you are applying for an internship outside of your major, include an objective statement so the employer knows exactly what you would like to do. I.e., “Use my skills as ______and apply them towards landing an internship at _______.”

If you haven’t read Lauren’s book, ALL WORK, NO PAY: Finding An Internship, Building Your Resume, Making Connections, and Gaining Job Experience – check it out: All Work, No Pay.