You want to get your next job. If that’s the case, one of the most important pieces of personal marketing material is your CV. Yet often the quality of CV’s varies from exceptional to appalling.
The truth is writing a good CV is tough. It takes time it takes effort and a whole lot of self awareness. If you are lacking in one of these areas it is going to be hard to do yourself justice in writing.
And if you cannot market yourself through your CV you are not likely to get many interviews. After a while your confidence takes a dent and you feel like you are on the road to nowhere.
Probably the most vital and often neglected piece is to get the base material together. This includes really establishing what you do well, identifying where you have really made a difference, delivered real results and achieved even when it was tough.
Trouble is most of us from professional backgrounds tend to understate what we have to offer. This might be because we don’t want to be seen as bragging or boasting. Yet if we don’t showcase what we offer, we are in many ways expecting a recruiter to be a mind reader.
Next you have to get attention quickly. Few will give your CV much more than a scan read. So that means you have to get them interested in the first few lines.
Your professional profile is the way in which you do it. This first section of your CV should say in 5 to 6 sentences what’s your track record, what you have achieved and what you bring to the organisation. It will in truth take a few drafts to get this right so be willing to stick with it.
Keep responsibilities to a minimum and really focus on achievements would be my next tip. It might be easy to cut and paste responsibilities from your job description. On the other hand achievements make you stand out.
What stops many people from highlighting achievements is that they assume that every achievement needs to be ground breaking. Believe me they don’t. Many people have achieved things that made a real difference. On the other hand only a really small minority have done something that is ground breaking or revolutionary.
The truth is that by investing time, energy and effort in creating a CV that showcases you and markets you effectively, the greater the chances of securing more interviews and landing that next job.
So how would you rate your CV on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being exceptional).
Duncan Brodie helps accountants to achieve more career success. He invites you to check out his free report The 7 Biggest Barriers To Having A Successful Career In Accountancy
Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 7,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.