One page or two? Oh, what to do? and other great resume debates


THE GREAT DEBATES: Answers to long standing and much discussed questions about resumes over the next three weeks of posts.

1. One page only, or is two-pager okay? (this week)

2. Chronological vs. Functional formats (next week)

3. Do I need an Objective Statement, or not? (the week after that . . . )


Let me preface this by saying that resumes writers and employers alike have varying opinions and preferences on all three of these questions.  There aren’t really any completely right or wrong answers, just different perspectives.  Here are mine:


1. One page vs. Two: Many, many people believe, mostly because they’ve been told, that resume MUST be ONLY ONE PAGE. Not true.

One Page:  Sure, one page is fine, you can’t usually go wrong –  but –  ONLY if you’re not selling yourself short by keeping it to one page.  Make sure your resume includes all your accomplishments and a solid sampling of your skills.

Two Pages: If you do have a two page resume:  make sure you 1) catch attention on the first page, 2) all the VITAL information is on the first page, because this way, if the reader doesn’t flip to the second page, nothing truly important is missed. Usually if your first page is impressive enough, most readers will flip to the see the second.

Really prefer to play it safe?  You need a well written, concise yet thorough one page resume, then.



Here’s the other Great Debate questions answered: Chronological vs. Functional & Are Objectives Objectionable (do I need one? or not?)

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