Sunday, February 20, 2011

Dust off your achievements and put them out there!

It has been 18 months to 2 years since I last sat down and updated my CV/resume.  In years gone by I tried to keep my CV current with each of the things I was doing along the way but I never felt like I had achieved anything really significant.

So I left the whole exercise to rest and gather dust.  Then I was prompted recently to sit down and write up my CV and to make it current again.  The difference between the 2009 version and the 2011 version?  Immense.

Here are the key differences -

  • Accomplishments.  Achievements take time.  It's just like money - you either win the lottery all at once, or like the rest of the world, you work at it one step at a time.
  • Language.  Describing the work you do the skills you bring and your abilities changes over time.  I find myself using more jargon and verbs rather than nouns and static language.  The aim is to use words that tell others that ultimately you can help them and assist them to succeed.
  • Self view.  Confidence comes and goes but having a record of your achievements certainly helps.  On those days when you are struggling to get by you can pull your CV out of the drawer and remind yourself that you are actually pretty good!

I recommend that you undertake a CV writing exercise if it is only for fun.  Compare what you write and the history you have made against an old version and see what the differences are.  You may or may not find yourself applying for a new job but that is not the purpose of the exercise.

The purpose of the exercise is to remind yourself that you have value and are a valuable contributor to your team and for your employer.  If you do decide that your CV is pretty good and you are confident in yourself - why not hang it out where people can see it?

(Hint - try sites like LinkedIn and Seek)

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