(I was talking with a colleague recently, however, and want to clarify that by "faster," I don't mean in 20 minutes. But if you routinely take 4-5 hours to write a mid-level professional resume, we might be able to shorten it by an hour or so -- without diminishing your results!)
Here are a couple of ways to help you improve your productivity, without sacrificing quality.
- Write the most difficult resumes first. If I have two resumes to write, and one is for a sales professional and one is for an IT analyst, I'd like to write the sales one first, but I make myself start with the technology one. We tend to do what we like first, yet the resumes we find the most difficult to write often require the most creative energy.
- Create a regular writing area. When you use the same place to write each day, your mind and body become trained. When you set up in that particular place, you can focus on the task at hand more quickly. I write best sitting on the floor of my office in front of my space heater -- all year long. I can't write when I'm cold, and I have a lap desk to make the writing more comfortable. When I get down on the floor, the words just seem to flow naturally.
- Get a focus on your focus. I have a mild form of attention deficit disorder. I think mine is "environmentally based" -- that is, it's developed because of being self-employed. When you constantly switch between dozens of tasks in a day (client management, accounting, IT guru, collections specialist, etc.), distractability is inevitable. Breaks in concentration can be caused by internal or external interruptions. Minimize external disruptions by closing your e-mail program and turning off the ringer on the phone, and shutting the door.