By Goke Ilesanmi
Last week, we said you need to write down everything you have ever done that demonstrates that you fit perfectly with what is wanted and needed by the prospective employer. We stressed that the whole idea is to organise your thinking such that you will be able to see some new connections between what you have done and what the employer is looking for. We identified three types of CVs, that is, chronological, functional and combined chronological functional. We said the most effective one is the combined chronological functional CV.
Having an objective statement that is really catching is the best. One format is:
“OBJECTIVE: An X position in an organisation where Y and Z would be needed.” X refers to the name of the position you are looking for. Y and Z are the most unique qualities, abilities or achievements that will really make you stand out from a crowd of applicants. The research previously done, to find out what is most important to the employer will provide the information to fill in Y and Z.
If you are actually not sure of the type of job you are looking for, adapt your CV to each type of job you apply for. There is nothing wrong with having several different CVs, each with a different objective, specifically composed for a different type of position. You may even want to change some parts of your CV for each job you apply for, have an objective that is perfectly matched with the job you are applying for. This is so because you are only writing an advertising copy, not your life story that is objectively fixed.
You may or may not need to use a separate Objective section if you are looking for a job in your present field. You may just include your Objective in your Summary section. The point of using an Objective is to create a specific psychological response in the mind of the reader. If you are making a career change or are a young person, you want the employer to immediately focus on where you are going, rather than where you have been. If you are looking for another job in your present field, it is more important to stress your qualities, achievements and abilities first.
The following are a few examples of the separate objective section:
*A mid-level position in the insurance industry where a background in public relations would be needed.
*An English language teaching position where a special ability to motivate and communicate effectively with students would be required.
(B) The Summary segment
The Summary or summary of qualifications segment consists of several concise statements that focus the reader’s attention on the most important qualities, achievements and abilities you have to offer. Those qualities should be the most compelling demonstration of why you should be employed at the expense of other candidates. The summary segment gives you a brief opportunity to list a few of your most striking qualities. It is your one and only chance to attract and hold the prospective employer’s attention, to get across what is most important, and to entice the employer to keep reading. This is the spiciest part of the CV. This may be the only section fully read by the employer. As such, it should be very strong and convincing. The summary is the one place to include professional characteristics such as, “An Energetic self-starter”; “Exceptional interpersonal skills”, etc. that may be helpful in winning an interview. Make sure every word in the summary is geared towards your targeted goal. To write a good Summary, you need to be conscious of the question, What would make someone the ideal candidate? Think of the qualities the employer will care about most.
(C) Accomplishments sub-section
This sub-section is the final part of the assertions section of your CV. Here, you go into detail. In short, you do exactly what you have done in the summary sub-section, except that you go into more detail. In the Summary sub-segment, you focus on your most special highlights. But here, you tell the rest of the best of your story. Let prospective employers know what results you have produced, what positively happened as a result of your efforts, what you are especially gifted or experienced at doing. Elaborate on the most important highlights in your summary.
By doing this, you are still writing to do what every good advertisement does. That is, communicating the following: “If you buy this product, you will get these direct benefits.” However, if this sub-section does not contribute to effective consolidation of your Summary highlights, you may not bother to include it.
Sometimes the Accomplishments sub-section is a separate entity. In a chronological CV, it becomes the first few phrases of the descriptions of the various jobs you have held.
There are a number of different ways to structure the Accomplishments sub-section. In all of these options, put your accomplishments in order of importance for the desired career results. If you are endowed with multiplicity of skills, the last skill paragraph might be called Additional Skills.
Here is how you could structure your accomplishments sub-section:
- Make a list of your accomplishments with bullets, e.g.
- Won Most Outstanding Performance award as a reporter at X newspaper in 2021.
- Exceeded sales target by N15 million in one month as a sales officer at Y company in 2021.
This is the second part of an effective CV. This name is only descriptive or suggestive in that there is actually no CV section basically tagged evidence. By evidence, we refer to all the mandatory and optional information you must include on your CV, e.g. chronological work history with dates, education, affiliations, list of software mastered, etc. e second half of the CV
To be continued
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GOKE ILESANMI (FIIM, FIMC, CMC), CEO of Gokmar Communication Consulting, is an International Platinum Columnist, Professional Public Speaker, Career Mgt Coach and Certified Mgt Consultant. He is also a Book Reviewer, Biographer and Editorial Consultant. Tel: 08056030424; 08055068773; 08187499425