Are they ever relevant?
Most lists of “Resume Don’ts” include hobbies or interests, advising you to leave those off of your resume and save them for the interview, ONLY if appropriate. Scrapbooking, bird watching, or jigsaw puzzles, for example, are activities that will most likely not help you land an interview and therefore do not warrant space on your resume. However, I do believe there are instances where your hobbies and interests may be relevant to the position you are currently targeting and can help add that little extra something to your document. These unique bits of information will help make your resume be memorable (in a good way) and stand out among the stack. Consider the following hobbies and the desirable skills they might portray:
- Marathon running: commitment to health and wellness, determination, perseverance
- Coaching youth sports: teambuilding, leadership, motivation
- World travel: diverse perspective, collaboration, adaptability
- Repairing antique automobiles: mechanical aptitude, attention to detail, quality-driven
- Competitive chess: problem solving, focus, analytical/critical thinking
- Pageantry: public speaking, self-confidence, engaging personality
- Flipping old homes: resource/budget management, risk assessment, project oversight
Always remember to continually analyze the information on your resume and ask yourself, “Will this help me land my next job?” If you can’t readily say yes, think carefully about utilizing space on your document where every bit counts.