This page contains an brief introduction and three guides for writing a Career Objective, depending on your level of expertise. Simply click a link to jump to the part that sounds most like you.
Introduction to Writing a Career Objective
Writing a Career Objective is a smart way to capture the attention of the hiring manager, if written correctly. Unfortunately, most people misunderstand what the Career Objective is supposed to say.
What the Career Objective IS supposed to say:
A short blurb telling the hiring manager what skills, knowledge, and abilities you have that will help the company achieve its goals.
What the Career Objective IS NOT supposed to say:
A short blurb telling the hiring manager what you want from the company, and in terms of how it will help your own career.
If you follow that one rule, your Career Objective will naturally be strong. However, you should read this guide to get concrete ideas about how to write yours.
Career Objective for a High School Student
(No professional experience or college degree)
View This Example:
If you do not have professional experience or a college degree, you may be hoping to land an entry-level job, apprenticeship, or internship. In your Career Objective, you’ll need to emphasize general traits about your character, personality, and work ethic that would make you a valuable employee.
You can do that by splitting the Career Objective into three sentences:
- 1st: Self introduction via mentioning your strongest (provable) traits
- 2nd: Telling the hiring manager which role you want to fill
- 3rd: Emphasizing that you are reliable, and have company goals in mind
Here’s an example of a Career Objective for a high school resume. (Each section is color coded according to the bullet points above.)
Hard-working student (3.5/4.0 GPA) with proven leadership and organizational skills, and minute attention to detail. Seeking to apply my abilities to fill the internship role in your company. I am a dedicated team player who can be relied upon to help your company achieve its goals.
This student claims to have leadership and organizational skills as his/her main traits, as well as a strong GPA.
Each of these will need to be PROVEN later in the resume – perhaps he/she is an elected student official, or helped organize school dances. That information would be contained within in the resume.
Career Objective Rule of Thumb
Don’t just make up nice sounding words to describe yourself – make sure that the traits you claim to have are actually reflected in the bullet points on your resume. You’ll need to think about what personality traits and strengths you exhibit in the activities you participate at school.
Here’s a short list of school activities and their associated character traits you can get some ideas from:
|School Activity:||Associated Character Traits:|
|Student Government:||Leadership, Management, Organization|
|Sports:||Team Player, Disciplined, Strategic|
|Theater Arts:||Public Speaking, Presentation Skills, Interpersonal Skills|
|Various Clubs:||Engaged, Active, Friendly, Enthusiastic|
|Academics:||Analytical, Hard Working, Fast Learner|
Try to target the Career Objective at the role that you’re applying for. A hiring manager for an internship role in finance might be less interested in your public speaking ability, and more interested in your analytical ability. However, a restaurant manager might be more interested in your interpersonal skills than your analytical ability.
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