Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Your CV is a taster rather than the whole story

Your CV serves one purpose and one purpose only and yet most people do not use it for this one purpose.

Too many people think it is a document that tells the reader their career history and some private facts thrown in for good measure. Some people limit the document to one page while others think nothing of using 10 pages. Some people go overboard on the design with fancy lines and boxes, different colours and photographs while others create a text mish mash of spelling errors, incorrect spacing and a general mess to the eye.

The biggest error all the above follow is that they use the same version of their creation for every single job they apply for because they think the purpose of their CV is to bore the reader with their career history.

The sole purpose of your CV is to get you an interview. Not the job, but an interview. When someone writes it in the belief that it’s purpose is to get them the job, it will not even get them an interview.

The response you want to get from your CV is that the reader will want to meet you. It is a taster of who you are and what you can do for them and they want to know more. If it tells them everything about you, they don’t need to meet you because they already know what they need to know. It is not a technical manual but your sales brochure.

When a film company releases a trailer of their latest epic, they show you maybe 3 minutes of highlights which might represent a two to three hour film. They don’t show you the boring bits, they show you extracts of the best bits because the purpose of the trailer is to get you along to watch the whole film.

Your CV is the same. Think of it as the film trailer to your career. Show enough information to make them want to meet you but not too much so they can decide not to. 
Tony Haley

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