I always appreciate reading your comments, and one of my favorite quotes from last time (by Steve Jobs shared by Desmond) was: “It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.”
Entrepreneurs need to find and hire lots of smart people, as their business(es) grow. Nearly no one is an entrepreneur his or her whole career. Most of us start by someone first taking a chance and hiring us, as an untested, unknown employee with a very, very short CV. (Maybe the only thing on it is our education, including what we did at school other than study, volunteer activities or sports, plus our contact details!)
That’s okay. Like I wrote a few weeks ago: Every single lion in the history of the world starts out as a cub… and with a CV with very little meat on it!
Now I’m not going to write at length about how to do a CV. There are lots of materials you can Google. Here are just a few observations:
__Your CV is part of your personal branding!
The format, length and content will vary, depending on your country, industry, and where you are in your career so far. It’s your job to check out the industry standard. One basic thing I will say which should go without saying: Make sure your CV looks nice and does not have typos. You really don’t want to send your job opportunities to the dustbin before someone even thinks about meeting you!
If you can’t market yourself with attention to detail on your own CV, why in the world would someone entrust any part of their business operations to you?
Also make sure you take the time to tailor the CV for the job you’re hoping to secure. Read the job description and help them see that you have exactly (or nearly) what it takes. Don’t just send the identical CV to everyone. To do that is just lazy! Do you research. Don’t waste their time, or your own. And always be honest. You are who you are. Don’t make up things.
Your cover letter: by now you know this one-pager must set you apart from the crowd, no matter where you are in your career. Short and to the point is best, but also be unique. Why you?
__Going through 1000s of CVs, why should someone be excited about, and remember, yours?
If you’re early in your career, take heart that #Experience plus #Skills and #Knowledge, are not the whole package people shop for… Even if you’re straight out of the starting gate, you could have a lot more to offer than you know, from your sport or other non-work experiences:
# Communications skills
# Organizational skills
# Good team player and/or leader
# Creative problem solving
# Attention to detail
Wow, you say? Yes, it’s a long list. And as I mentioned in my Town Halls a few weeks ago, you must know how to learn, or learn how to learn… By now I don’t need to tell you why.
As someone always on the lookout for talent, it’s wonderful when I discover someone new, even occasionally with only a short track record. Sometimes you just sense confidence, creativity and smarts and you know that person is going somewhere!
Whether an employer or (aspiring) employee, what do YOU look for? What’s the best advice you’ve given or heard from others?
To be continued. . .