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How to Write a Business Owner Resume

How you format a resume and layout a resume is as important as how you write your resume. This sample resume demonstrates the best formatting hacks to follow: 1-inch margins, bullet points and clear resume headings for each of the following sections.

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  • Professional header and contact info

    • Include your name, contact information and a professional email address.
  • Compelling summary statement

    • A brief resume summary or objective highlighting two or three business-relevant skills, experience or accomplishments.
  • Highlight your skills

    • Create a dedicated section to showcase hard and soft skills for business operations like project management, inventory or budgeting.
  • Emphasize your work history

    • List your work experience in reverse-chronological order: include job titles, company names, dates of employment and key responsibilities and achievements for each role in a bullet list.
  • Supporting education section

    • Detail your educational background, mentioning any relevant degrees, diplomas, or certifications obtained.
  • Additional sections

    • You can add resume sections for licenses, certifications, industry memberships or unions, awards, volunteer experience or spoken languages.


How to Write a Business Owner Resume Summary

A resume summary or resume objective sits right below your contact information. This introduction works as a marketing tool, enabling you to pitch your key features and entice hiring managers to read your entire business owner resume. These professional marketing tips help you identify three transferable resume skills:

Start with a strong opening

Add specific industry and job description keywords to immediately grab the reader’s attention and demonstrate your relevant skills.

Highlight business achievements

Quantify your achievements whenever possible to provide tangible evidence of your impact. Focus on measurable results, such as revenue growth, cost savings, market expansion, or successful business strategies.

Emphasize transferable skills

Identify the skills you have developed as a business owner that apply to the desired role. Highlight leadership, strategic planning, problem-solving, team management, financial analysis or any other relevant skills that align with the job requirements.

Keep it concise and engaging

Remember, the summary section should be a brief snapshot of your qualifications, so aim for three to five impactful sentences. Use action verbs and dynamic language to make your summary engaging and easy to read.

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Good business owner resume sample

“Results-driven business owner with over a decade of experience driving revenue growth and building high-performance teams. Led the successful expansion into new markets, resulting in a 30% increase in annual sales. Proven expertise in strategic planning, operational efficiency, and customer relationship management. A visionary leader with a track record of delivering exceptional results in highly competitive industries.”

This well-written resume summary highlights the candidate’s experience, achievements and transferable skills. It opens with a strong statement and quantifiable results, showcasing the candidate’s successful business expansion and revenue growth.

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Poor business owner resume sample

“Experienced business owner with excellent leadership skills. Successfully managed day-to-day operations and grew the business. Good at problem-solving and team management.”

This poorly-written resume summary needs more impact and specificity — this job seeker relies on generic information. The lack of transferable skills or quantifiable achievements means that most hiring managers will pass within seven seconds of reading this resume.


How to Add Your Business Owner Work History

Section: How to Write a Business Owner Work History Resume Section

The work history section of your business owner resume is a critical component that showcases your entrepreneurial journey and the impact you’ve made in previous ventures. Follow these guidelines to create a compelling business owner work history resume section:

Focus on clear job titles and company names

Begin each entry with the official job title you held as a business owner and include the name and location of your company. This provides clarity and context for the reader.

Use bullet points to highlight critical tasks

Describe transferable responsibilities that highlight your leadership, strategic decision-making and operational management skills. Additional skills include business planning, financial management, marketing initiatives, team management and client relationships.

Use data as evidence

Wherever possible, quantify your achievements and outcomes to showcase your impact on your business. Include metrics such as revenue growth, profit margins, market share, customer acquisition, or cost savings. This helps to demonstrate your ability to drive success and deliver tangible results.

Highlight notable projects or milestones

If applicable, highlight any significant projects, milestones, or business expansions you successfully led as a business owner. This could include launching a new product line, entering new markets, securing significant contracts, or implementing innovative strategies. Such examples demonstrate your entrepreneurial vision and execution capabilities.

Tailor the content to the job requirements

While presenting your work history, emphasize the experiences and achievements that align most closely with the job you’re applying for. Tailoring your resume to the specific job helps the reader understand how your business owner experience relates to their organization’s needs.

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Good business owner resume sample

Founder & CEO | Barbell Designs
Austin, TX | March 2014 – May 2021

  • Successfully launched and grew a start-up business from conception to $5 million in annual revenue within three years.
  • Developed and executed comprehensive business strategies, resulting in a 50% increase in market share and expanded customer base.
  • Led a high-performing team of 20 employees, fostering a collaborative and results-oriented work environment.
  • Implemented cost-saving initiatives, optimizing operational efficiency and increasing profit margins by 20%.

This persuasive business owner work history example highlights the candidate’s achievements, growth, and impact as an entrepreneur. The bullet points quantify the revenue and market share gained, showcasing their ability to drive business success. The mention of team leadership and cost-saving initiatives demonstrates their managerial skills and business acumen.

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Poor business owner resume sample

Founder & CEO | Barbell Designs
Austin, TX | March 2014 – May 2021

  • Responsible for managing day-to-day operations and overseeing staff.
  • Worked on sales and marketing activities.
  • Handled financial matters.

This poor business owner’s work history example must be more specific and showcase the candidate’s accomplishments and impact. The bullet points provide generic information without any quantifiable results or notable achievements. The lack of detail makes it difficult for the reader to understand the scope of the candidate’s responsibilities and the value they brought to their business.


How to Write a Business Owner Education Section

While experience as a business owner often holds significant weight, showcasing your educational background in your resume can reinforce your qualifications and highlight relevant knowledge and skills. The education section allows you to demonstrate your commitment to professional growth and development. Follow these guidelines to present your education in a business owner resume effectively:

1Start with business degrees and diplomas

Top your education section with your highest-level degree and work your way back. Add the degree and major, institution’s name, location, and graduation date.

Degree formatting example:

Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), University of XYZ, City, State

2Add certifications or training programs

If you have completed specialized certifications, training programs, or workshops relevant to your business owner role or industry, list them in this section. These credentials demonstrate your commitment to professional development and add value to your resume.

Certification formatting example:

Certified Business Analyst (CBA) | International Institute of Business Analysis, 2022
Small Business Management Program | Entrepreneurship Institute, 2022

3Highlight professional development

If you have participated in professional development activities, such as seminars, conferences, or industry-specific workshops, mention them in this section. This helps hiring managers gauge your knowledge of current trends.

Professional development example:

Attendee | National Business Summit on Strategic Leadership | May 2023
Workshop | Digital Marketing Strategies for Business Growth | January 2023

4Showcase relevant awards or honors

If you have received any notable awards, honors, or scholarships during your academic or professional journey, include them in this section. This adds credibility and demonstrates recognition for your accomplishments.

Award formatting example:

Outstanding Entrepreneur of the Year Award, City Chamber of Commerce


15 Skills to Boost Your Business Owner Resume

Although we pepper skills throughout our business owner resume samples, the skills section helps you focus on six to eight crucial skills. Try to showcase a dynamic mix of soft, hard and technical skills for each job opening.

Here is a list of fifteen business-friendly skills to get you started.

soft skills

Soft skills

  • Leadership
  • Communication
  • Problem-solving
  • Adaptability
  • Negotiation
hard skills

Hard skills

  • Financial Management
  • Strategic Planning
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Operations Management
  • Business Development

Technical skills

  • Data Analysis
  • Digital Marketing
  • Project Management
  • E-commerce
  • Technology Proficiency
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When writing your salesman resume, incorporate a balanced mix of skills that align with the specific requirements of the sales role you are targeting.


20 Business Owner Action Verbs

Since hiring managers can read hundreds of applications for a single opening, unique action verbs and power words can help you write persuasive resume descriptions. These 20 action verbs may help create a dynamic, engaging narrative showcasing your proactive approach and accomplishments.

  • Achieve
  • Analyze
  • Collaborate
  • Create
  • Develop
  • Establish
  • Evaluate
  • Generate
  • Implement
  • Lead
  • Manage
  • Negotiate
  • Optimize
  • Oversee
  • Plan
  • Resolve
  • Strategize
  • Streamline
  • Supervise
  • Transform


Additional Resume Sections

Consider adding the following sections to your business owner resume based on your specific circumstances and to enhance your qualifications:

  • Certification: Include a separate section to showcase relevant credentials, such as the certified business analysis professional (CBAP), project management professional (PMP) or Salesforce Marketer certification.
  • Professional Development: Use a professional development section featuring workshops, seminars or business operation] programs to replace or supplement your education section.
  • Awards and Achievements: If you have received recognition or awards for your performance, productivity, or safety record, include a section to showcase these accomplishments.
  • Volunteer Experience: Replace your work history section with a volunteer section if you have less than three years of experience. Use this space to demonstrate relevant skills or attributes, such as trend forecasting or financial literacy.
  • Language Proficiency: Your fluency in other languages could help if you work for an international company.
  • Memberships: Let hiring managers know about your membership to industry-specific organizations or unions.

Use a Cover Letter to Express Yourself

A resume is a concise overview of your skills and experience — a cover letter expands on this foundation. Add a cover letter to share one or two examples of how you excelled in similar roles or how your skills match a company’s needs. Use this sample as a guide or visit our helpful resources to boost your application.

Business Owner Resume FAQ

How do I compress my extensive business owner experience into one resume?

Most job seekers think they need to add their entire work history — don't! You can write a concise but impressive resume focusing on your transferable experience. Carefully read an open job description, note where your expertise aligns with the responsibilities, and prioritize that information.

Should I include all my past business ventures on my resume?

As mentioned above, only add business ventures relevant to the desired role or showcase transferable skills. Prioritize the most recent and successful ventures, highlighting achievements and growth.

What if my business didn't achieve significant financial success?

Even if financial success was limited, focus on other accomplishments like successful projects, market expansion, client relationships, or operational improvements. Highlight transferable skills developed during your business ownership journey.

How do I address gaps in my employment due to starting my own business?

Be transparent and mention your entrepreneurial endeavors as self-employment. Highlight the skills, experiences, and achievements gained during that period. Emphasize the transferable skills that are relevant to the desired role.

Can I showcase volunteer work or community involvement as a business owner?

Absolutely! Volunteer work and community involvement can demonstrate leadership, social responsibility, and organizational skills. Include relevant volunteer experiences that align with the job requirements or demonstrate your well-roundedness as a professional.