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How to prepare a winning Resume / CV

By: Richard Penfold

Careers How to prepare a winning Resume / CV...

A few good habits starting NOW, will hold you in good stead for the rest of your career...

Preparation is critical; the best builder in the world would not build a house without a blueprint and survey, not if he wanted to stay in business.

Your Resume is a vital career building document that done well will give you the chance to secure a better career and earn many thousands of dollars a year more in salary than you would if you take a half heated approach.

The intention of this article is to give you the Resume preparation blueprint that you will use and develop throughout your career.

This is not going to require any deep thinking or use of technology.

To use the house building analogy this will give you the understanding of the required components and materials required to build a basic dwelling to a block of luxury apartments.

In resume terms the ability and resource to quickly tailor your resume information to suit whatever role you want to apply for successfully.

You may think that you will skip resume writing completely and simply hire a pro resume writer to do it for you.

But you will still need to provide them the basic information, from which they can weave their magic.

So let's get this organized, once it's done you will continue to add information into it, but basically it's done FOREVER.

What you want to do is build a simple folder and file structure on your PC, if you don't have a PC borrow a friend's and keep you folder on a disk.

Step 1 create a folder and name it My Resume or CV or whatever reminds you.

Step 2 Then add a page for each of the headings listed below

* Address and preferred contact details (phone and email).

* Personal Information, gender, nationality, driver license, marriage status

* Education / Qualification

* Training and certification details.

* Career history covering the companies, roles / title, dates and roles andresponsibilities, achievements.

* Any other areas of responsibility, for example voluntary work, or team captain, head boy or girl at university or college.

* Any thought leadership examples, articles published, public speaking.

* Any honors or achievements.

* Hobbies and interests

* Positive personality and behavioral traits you have, get friends, family or colleagues to help if needed.

* Membership / Associations

* Testimonials

Note: You may feel that you will never need a page for Other Responsibilities, Awards, Published Article or Testimonials, but I urge you to keep them, because if you get the chance to add content to any of these pages it WILL set you apart from your competitors.

I would particularly draw your attention to testimonials. It's very easy to get a testimonial form somebody you have done a good job for. Clearly you must have done a better than average job for them.

Confirm with them that they liked your work and ask them to drop you an email or letter to that effect.

This is a great habit to get into.

A short testimonial embedded within your resume or cover letter used sparingly (1-3 max within a resume) will increase your chances massively. Obviously don't make them up yourself they may check them out!

Also get used to recording your work history in "business" terms. What I mean here is that whatever role you had was in some way vital to the business, no matter how junior.

They would not have employed you otherwise.

Therefore record your work experience in terms of the objectives of the role and how these objectives supported the overall business strategy, any measurements used, what skills you used to perform your role, what you learnt and achieved. Try and use tangible precise values if possible.

For example if you worked in a store part-time express your performance in terms of how you over-performed in sales revenue (averaged over $500 sales a week - the highest performing assistant), 100% attendance and commendation for customer service (great moment to slip in a testimonial from your then boss!).

If you can convey through your resume that whatever role you undertake you never loose sight of the overall business objective of the company, no matter how minor your role, you will be in a very, very small percentage.

Embed these good habits now, and I promise you, you will never look back.

Good Luck!

Richard has been working in the recruitment industry for 11 years and specialises in Risk Management and Business Continuity.

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