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5 Common Mistakes Managers Make when Writing a CV and easy ways to fix them!

If you’re looking for your next career step, then you’re in the right place.

I love helping Managers understand their value so they can write a fantastic CV and get that new job!

However, before you jump right in and write your CV, here are some of the most common mistakes I see every day.

The reality is these mistakes will damage your reputation, cost you jobs and lose you salary increases.

1. No planned goal or outcome

Stop for a sec. Now think like the manager you are. If you have a project, what’s critical before you start. What’s the very first thing you do. You map out the goal, the final outcome.

So, why aren’t you doing this for your job search?

Why aren’t you using those tremendous management skills to approach this?

How can you help yourself?

Define your goal or outcome. What role are you looking for?

Be as niche as possible – title, industry, company size, salary range…when you do this, you’ll nail that job search.

Stop spraying and praying.

Start niching and nailing.

2. You've no foundation on which to build your success

A job search is demanding and time-consuming.

Add the anxiety and need to maintain your confidence even if things aren’t going your way.

Imagine feeling all that and still needing to tailor your CV for every role. Sitting down and rewriting your CV for every single application you submit…

Let’s be honest; there has to be a way to make this easier.

How can you help yourself?

Create a strong foundation CV.

Research your niche, look at role information and compare them. Create an ideal role profile and use it as the target for your CV.

That onerous tailoring becomes minor tweaking.

3. You don't know or believe in your value

Your CV is not your job description, and neither is it a list of mundane daily tasks.

Your CV acts as an advert. The product is YOU!

Your advert will be among a sea of other adverts, just like the world around you.

Your mission (should you choose to take it!) is to make your CV stand out. To rise above all the others. To make it speak to the Recruiter/Hiring Manager.

How can you do this?

By knowing your value.

By knowing the outcomes you bring. Understanding the problems you solve.

You do this by looking back at your previous roles; after all, past performance is an indicator of future performance.

Ask yourself:

  • What was different when I left than when I started – what part did I play in this?
  • What were my KPIs, how did I achieve them?
  • Why was I recruited – did I achieve it?
  • What was the role scope (budgets, staff, facilities, the volume of customer interactions, the revenue of sales, size of the company etc.…)

4. You lack quality assurance

Another widespread mistake made are mistakes! Spelling and grammatical errors. You won’t believe how common this actually is.

In an ideal, diverse and inclusive world, this wouldn’t be an issue; however, it is right here, right now. It’s rare to find a Recruiter or Hiring Manager who’ll give you the benefit of the doubt for errors.

How can you help yourself?

There are so many options here that there really is no excuse for a slapdash approach to your CV; all it says is you’ll lack quality assurance in your role.

  • Read it out loud. When you do this, you’ll be surprised how many errors there are; it also helps you pick up on repetition and sentence length.
  • Get someone else to read it. Be clear, and tell them why they are reading it and what feedback you’re looking for.
  • If you’re in MS Word, use the Editor function.
  • Use an online grammar and spell checker such as Grammarly
  • Check, check and then check again

5. You make it difficult to read

Remember, when a Recruiter or Hiring Manager gets your CV, they likely have a pile of others. Put yourself in their shoes…

You have 50 CVs to shortlist. What’s key to you here? To be able to find the relevant information on each CV quickly and easily.

This means many things such as targeting, demonstrating your value to the target role, providing evidence on how you meet the criteria. Yet something is so often missed.

That’s making sure visually the CV is easy to read. Too often, I see CVs that have all of the above. Still, they’re not being shortlisted because the information is too difficult to find. So the CV hits the no pile faster than Usain Bolt out of the starting blocks…this usually is when someone comes to me and tells me they aren’t getting interviews they are a perfect fit for.

How can you help yourself?

Put yourself in the Recruiter/Hiring Managers shoes. What are they looking for? How can you give easily give them this information?

Think of the top half of page 1 as prime CV real estate. If they don’t see it here, it’s unlikely they’ll read on.

Forget about fancy formatting, double columns, graphics, diagrams, or vomiting rainbows across the page.

When a Recruiter/Hiring Manager picks up your CV and looks at the top, what do they need to see to entice them to read on…

Want to learn more about how to create a CV that gets you interviews and salary increases?

I regularly run CV workshops called ‘Ignored to Interviewed’.

These aren’t your run of the mill online training where no one cares if you take action after they’ve taken your money.

This is a workshop designed to ensure you finish with a CV that generates interviews, makes Recruiters/Hiring Managers desperate to talk to you, and leads to promotions and salary increases.

You’ll also know your value and believe in the outcomes you can bring – you’ll be more confident in yourself than you’ve ever been!


Ready for some assistance?

Ready for that next career step?

You can find everything you need to know about ‘Ignored to Interviewed by clicking here.