“Opportunities don’t happen. You create them.” – Chris Grosser
You want success, but how do you know what success is for you. Do you have your objectives set? Do you have a specific job targeted? You can’t create a targeted CV until you know what you want to target.
If you don’t know what you want, how does a company know that it wants you? So when writing your CV how do you know what skills to focus on when you don’t know what companies or what industry you want to target?
There is a lot of competition when it comes to getting a position, and most coaches will tell you that most applicants do not bother to target their CVs or even the companies they apply for.
What is Targeting?
When we refer to targeting we mean proving that you are the best candidate to a certain company; that you meet the employer requirements. You must show your worth to a specific industry. And to help you do that some companies, such as Google, for instance, offer templates to help you fill in the exact information they are looking for. This is a way the employer can see how a candidates successes and experience can best fit their needs. Targeting your CV helps identify your strengths and demonstrates how these can help the specific company you want to apply to.
Why Targeting is Important
In the business sphere, an employer needs to know that you fit their needs. And the only way they can do that is by confirming your past accomplishments and your current skills. However your job is to show where those accomplishments fit in with their needs, and a generic resume that doesn’t list those needs and how you can fill them doesn’t show them how you could be right for the position.
How Can you Target Your Resume?
The first thing you want to do is research the company you plan on applying to. Learn what the company believes in; what they look for and what they like to see in candidates. Once you have this info, you’ll know how to brand your skills to their needs; how to change your designers CV for the better.
1. Target the Company with your Title, Branding Statement and Summary
Instead of just writing a bland objective statement, and title. You must create a branding statement that sums up your value and expresses what you want, and the value you can offer them. Then follow it up with a summary that highlights your abilities and successes. Always make sure you use up to date information for this summary.
2. Use Business Keywords
Yes, you want to use business keywords. These demonstrate your knowledge of a particular industry, but you don’t want to overuse these buzzwords either. These help identify your professional knowledge and your constant improvement.
3. Avoid These Overused Buzzwords
There are three words you really want to avoid. These are the CV buzzwords that may work against you instead of for you. These are “motivated,” “creative” and “enthusiastic.” These and other overused buzzwords have become a turn-off to recruiters and employers; people just over use words like “passionate,” “drive” and “strategic.”
4. Do Something ‘Off the Chart’ if Appropriate
What to do to stand out from the crowd. Well targeting is certainly helpful and branding yourself through effective writing can also go a long way. But sometimes going the extra mile can be worth, then again sometimes not.
Whatever you do and whether a company approves of your tactics or not; it’s important to remember your CV objective is to get your foot in the door. And whether you use a creative presentation like a box that says OPEN HERE, a t-shirt that lists your branding statement or an iced cake with your CV details in the icing, the one thing you can say about these off the chart presentations of a CV is that they are attention grabbing.
Here are some good examples of this type of special CV presentation:
A woman took the ‘get the foot in the door’ thing a little too seriously. So as an attention grabbing response she sent a shoe along with her CV, asking to let her get a foot in the door.
Of course you could send your CV as a cute packaged box, with an OPEN First message printed on top.
Kristian Leigh Walsh took an interesting idea and used it with her CV. She printed her information in the shape of the LIFE game board.
While an unusual CV like a cake iced with your CV information may seem a bit off the top, it can work and bring you all you wanted. However think carefully before choosing one of these methods as it can also seem inappropriate and even irritating to potential employers. On the other hand, this type of emotional or humorous draw can also reel in that interview. You might get chastised for the method once you are on that interview, but the Purpose (to get an interview) is accomplished. Now you have to rely on your personable skills.
Even if you just target your resume to a specific company, adding important information that will address them directly, offer a good attention grabbing title, personal branding statement and summary that directs your skills to the employer’s needs, you are well ahead of the game. For some companies, that is enough. However when the competition is tough well you may need to be even more direct, use alternative methods that will get your foot in the door. Just do your due diligence, use a specific company template when available, and target your experience and skills towards the company, demonstrating how you can be an asset. This way you can find that job that’s worth improving your life.
Should You Do It All Yourself?
Probably not. When creating a CV you want it aesthetically attractive and well written, so you need the help of two professionals; the design professional and the professional writer; and that can only come through a service that specializes in professional CVs.