You know the feeling: you’re revising or building your resume for that job you really, really want, and you’re almost done. All that’s left is that pesky “Additional Interests” section—that you can’t really call pesky, because, you know, you were the one who put it on there. But there’s something that feels important about it. You want your employer to know you—even outside of your job qualifications.
So, if you’re anything like most Americans, you’ll list, oh, about a hundred other things that you’re interested in, that will somehow build you up to be that One Special Candidate. You have a backbone! You have interests! You’re creative! You help others!
We know this, because we recently analyzed 3,543,017 resumes from people just like you, to find out just what you guys are listing there. What we found… was weird, to put it simply. And in today’s map, we’re showing you just how weird each state really is.
We gathered up the most disproportionately common interests found on people’s resumes in each state across the country, by analyzing a veritable boatload of resumes. 3,543,017 to be exact. We then looked at which keywords appeared in people’s additional interests the most across the country. Then we made a nifty map, because, maps are fun.
What the map doesn’t show you, though, is just how crazily many resumes did mention these commonly used keywords. In Alaska, for example, you can see that the most used keyword was “trucks.” But, fun fact—“trucks” was actually mentioned in a (borderline fanatical) 232 resumes, out of 11,283. What is it with Alaskans and trucks? We’re not sure. But in the next section, we’ll take a look at some examples from real resumes. Because stuff like “Kardashians” and “UFOs” might need some explaining.
The fact that Kardashians was even mentioned once in about 100K resumes is astonishing. Guys—don’t put Kardashian in your resume. No matter what.
In this case, here was the context: “-One of less than 15 companies included in several backstage Swag/Celebrity events such as MTV, BET, The GRAMMY’s, Emmy Awards, and Steve Harvey Neighborhood Awards for 8 years in a row. -Designed and worked for many TV networks and celebrities such as The Kardashians, Beyonce Knowles Carter, Paris Hilton, and other industry favorites”
So, sure, it makes sense. But really—do you want to be bragging about your affiliation with the Kardashians?
It might seem like we’re stereotyping here (New Mexico – UFOs, you know), but for real—of the resumes we looked at, three from New Mexico mentioned UFOs. Here’s an example: “Familiar with many different satellite types including DSCS, MILSTAR, UFO, Intel Sat, and Pan Am Sat.”
So… that’s cool.
I, for one, am SUPER EXCITED that Harry Potter made it onto our map, with a magical 13 mentions in Rhode Island. This person, for instance, was responsible for the “Harry Potter Science Night.” He/She also “Demonstrated non-Newtonian fluids and density through fun, interactive activities.” This person sounds awesome.
Yes, that’s right: porn. This word wasn’t the most commonly used in any state, but the fact that we came across it at all is insane. It starts out pretty normal, but then… just keep reading.
“Full lifecycle EMR implementation consulting in the ambulatory environment * Project coordination, change management, and training * Technology proficient – Office products, eLearning/CBT?, illegally downloading porn, hating on UK on Facebook * Interpersonal skills spanning all ages and levels of learning, from all walks of life”
You can’t just stick that in there and then keep going like you didn’t! WHAT IS HAPPENING!
“Redneck” is another resume keyword that came up a surprising amount (not enough to be the most mentioned in any state, but still). Here’s an example of why this actually does make sense:
“Interacted with festival attendees, helping them find their way around the festival as well as helping them sign up for the National Taco Association Arizona Barbecue Festival… Oversaw and maintained order of the horseshoe toss in the Redneck Arena…”
Is to be mindful of the words you put into your resume. Most of the time when companies look at them, they scan for keywords—just like we did here. If you’re dropping in subtle mentions of “porn” or “Kardashians,” believe us, it will be noticed. (And not necessarily in a good way.)
27. North CarolinaKardashian
28. North DakotaPizza
30. New HampshireBigfoot
31. New JerseyUsa
32. New MexicoUfos
34. New YorkComics
39. Rhode IslandPotter
40. South CarolinaBmw
41. South DakotaBooks
49. West VirginiaGay