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You were a master of Photoshop before anyone else you knew had a PC—And you haven’t stopped since. You’re here, with plenty of experience and skills to make it as a creative director.
There is only one more thing you need.
A captivating creative director resume.
In this guide:
- A creative director resume example that gets the interview.
- Tips on building your creative director job description for maximum effect.
- Expert hints to increase the chances of your creative director resume.
- How to write a creative director resume that stands out.
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Creative Director Resume Example for You to Make Your Own
Tess B. Williams
3968 Wright Court
Seattle, WA 98101
Inventive creative director with 9+ years of experience in building new teams of designers, copywriters, and online marketing talent. Developed a team that secured key accounts worth over $25m total, and $6m+ annually, including such brands as Sprint, Honeywell and Clinique. Maintained strong relations and 95% client retention rate since team inception. Best Cross Platform Campaign laureate in 2019 (DDAAUS). Excited to apply proven experience at Zenith-Omega.
- Built a creative team from scratch, starting with 7, now up to 19 world-class professionals.
- Responsible for key accounts worth $25m to-date, and $6m+ annually.
- Managed online, print, TV and multi-platform regional, national and international campaigns for clients such as Sprint, Honeywell, Clinique, Publix, Xfinity, 3M and DirecTV.
- Expert at maintaining relations with corporate clients, 95% client retention rate since team inception.
- Saved $150k annually through expert maintenance of relations with contractors, securing favorable rates with several studios and photo/videographers.
- Implemented project management tools (FunctionFox) and Agile principles to improve work organization and complete 97% projects within deadline since team inception.
Assistant Creative Director
- Alongside the creative director, managed a team of 25 design and marketing professionals.
- Helped the creative director secure 35 new accounts during tenure, worth $2.8m annually, partly through spearheading intensive social media campaigns.
- Jointly responsible for accounts worth $4m annually.
- Managed multi-platform regional and national campaigns for brands such as GameStop, Carter’s and Express.
- Adobe Creative Suite: InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, Bridge, After Effects
- Art Directors Toolkit 5i, Art Files 3 (Code Line)
- Client Relationship Management
- Time Management
- Interpersonal Skills
- Effective Communication
BS in Marketing
- 2019 — Best Cross Platform Campaign (Clinique) — The Drum Digital Advertising Awards US
- Project Management Professional (Project Management Institute)
- SEO Essentials Certificate (Moz)
Let the juices flow.
1. Pick Your Creative Director Resume Format
It feels odd to instruct someone who designs everything for a living on how something should look. While you may be able to tell anyone expert things about typography and kerning, I shall relegate myself to the role of the voice of reason. We both know you’re going to do your own thing.
Here’s the standard resume format:
Creative Director Resume Format
- Definitely use the chronological resume format in reverse, to bring your most recent stuff upfront.
- Consider using a sensible, common font for your resume.
- Use 1-inch margins of your resume and negative space.
- Follow this order of resume sections: Resume Header, Objective, Experience, Education, and “Additional.”
- Try to fit it on a one-page resume.
- Send your resume in PDF format, unless you know better.
Including your address on your resume is not necessary, although there are exceptions. For example, the employer may be looking to hire locals.
What would David Ogilvy do?
Expert Hint: One of the worst resume mistakes you can make is to underestimate the importance of studying the job description and getting to know the employer before you send your resume.
2. Formulate Your Creative Director Resume Summary or Objective
Here is the focal point of your creative director resume. Perhaps the only one. If you fail here, nothing else will matter. Brevity is key. Your ideas are cool and all, but remember that this is a capitalist enterprise and the employer would like to be able to estimate what you can handle.
Refer to the projects, budgets, and accounts you have dealt with. Focus on the clients and projects that have most in common with your new employer, and write a targeted resume. Cite the numbers, achievements and awards you have in your career summary.
Even though the introduction is the first section of your creative director resume, it’s not necessarily the first thing you should write when starting a resume. Writing the resume profile last may save you precious time, by reducing the risk of hitting a writer’s block.
Creative Director Resume Sample: Summary
The bad example hides behind empty statements and generalizations. As long as you are authorized to disclose who your clients and projects were, you should. Use resume power words like improved, directed, developed, to quantify the presence you can have in a workplace to allow your new employer to imagine it.
Your first attempt at holding the creative director title and in need of an entry-level resume?
Not a problem. Write a career objective like the one below—or better!
Creative Director Resume Sample: Objective
Expert Hint: If you are applying for these positions, your story might be as long as the one of creativity itself. Focus on the most recent and most quantifiable achievements. In case of past positions, only go into detail if you had any achievements which were really uncommon for someone in your position. If you held positions with different responsibilities, and have a range of different technologies or certifications under your belt, a two-page resume is acceptable.
3. Get Your Job Description and Skills Section Billboard Ready
Here’s where you get to shine. Your work experience on a resume must show the wide spectrum of responsibilities you took on, and the measurable impact they made. In other words, you must almost be The Most Interesting Person In The World.
Use powerful resume words and describe your work accomplishments in each facet of creative directorship. Show them you can be as much Hegarty as you can be Jack Welch.
Creative Director Resume Job Description
Some people think an art director is interchangeable with a creative director. However, as pointed out by an FIU College of Communication article, and as you and I both know there’s a big difference between them. As a creative director, you’re responsible not only for the creative side of project management, but also for the business side of things.
Pay special attention to all of those special skills you possess when listing them in your resume.
After describing your sizable experience, you may have a lot of things left over that you didn’t get a chance to talk about. Perhaps you have some technologies, mediums, and skills up your sleeve, but they don’t warrant a separate bullet point.
You can list those in a resume skills section, unless you’re a negative-space-loving minimalist.
Creative Director Skills for Resume
- Active Listening
- Project Management
- Effective Communication
- Business Design
- Conceptual Skills and Planning
- Cost Management
- Designing Project Scope
- Managing Multiple Large-Scale Projects
- Negotiating with Vendors
- Strategy Development
- Team Management & Delegation
- Written Communication
- Project Management Software (e.g. FunctionFox)
- Adobe Creative Suite: InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, Bridge, After Effects, etc.
- Art Directors Toolkit 5i, Art Files 3
- Client Relationship Management
- UX Design
- Print Design
- Photography and Branding
- Video Production
- Computer Skills
- Marketing Skills
Expert Hint: A PMP (Project Management Professional) certification is the gold standard in IT projects, but can be translatable to creative projects too, and can help with moving up to higher levels of management. PMI is the body that offers the gold standard PMP certification.
The ResumeLab builder is more than looks. Get specific content to boost your chances of getting the job. Add job descriptions, bullet points, and skills. Easy. Improve your resume in our resume builder now.
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4. Minimalize Your Education Section Accordingly
Unless you’re a David Droga type phenom taking over an agency at 22, chances are, you graduated a very long time ago. I know it seems like it was yesterday. Keep telling yourself that. Don’t waste valuable space, however. Negative space is better than talking about your coursework from 2003.
Simply list your major, school name, and graduation date.
Creative Director Resume Sample—Education
Expert Hint: Some creative director positions may require more than a bachelor’s degree. List your master’s degree first, keeping the reverse-chronological order, and read more about listing education on your resume.
5. Smooth Out Your Creative Director Resume With Added Sections
If you’re a fan of negative space, or your award shelf is empty, you can finish here. If, however, there are some more nuggets of value that you’d like to smuggle through, you can add bonus resume sections.
For your field, industry awards would be the most prestigious.
Consider the rest only if it’s something really relevant to the job:
- Foreign Languages
- Hobbies and Interests
- Professional References
- Skills—if you haven’t included them as part of your other sections
Compare these two creative director resume examples:
Creative Director Resume Example—Extra Sections
And that would be the bare sketch of it. Of course, your touch and flair will make it something unique. You can also consider writing a cover letter. It will allow you to talk about work experience and accomplishments in more detail.
Expert Tip: Don’t write a generic cover letter. A modern cover letter should also be customized to the position you’re applying for.
Double your impact with a matching resume and cover letter combo. Use our cover letter generator and make your application documents pop out.
Want to try a different look? There’s 18 more. A single click will give your document a total makeover. Pick a cover letter template here.
Remember the following rules and break them at will:
- Consider a standard resume format—margins, fonts, 1 page, reverse chronological.
- Quantify the impact and achievements, instead of just describing work. Think about projects completed, budgets, schedule, improvements.
- Limit the length of the education section to make space for experience.
- Remember to write a striking creative director cover letter.
Did you find our creative director resume examples helpful? Did we help you get your creative director resume right? Leave a comment. We’ll be happy to reply.