Thursday, August 14, 2014

How to Write a CV

So you're struggling with your CV and google, in its robotic wisdom, has brought you here. Well, sir, you're in luck. I recently updated mine and have decided to share my methods with you.



THE GIRARDIN METHOD FOR CV MASTERYNESS


Important note 1 - Because of this blog's graphical limitations, I can't show you my CV as an A4-sized image. So I've broken it down into readable sections. At the end I'll show you how it all fits together.

Important note 2 - My whole CV is only one page. Writing more than that would be like splitting The Hobbit into 3 movies - preposterous and tiresome.


Section 1 - "About Me"

Here you should sell yourself in a few concise sentences. Imagine your CV is a review of a movie - this is where you write the bits that go on the posters. There's no point being modest. Being modest isn't how Megan Fox got her big break. Look how it's done:


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Notice that I mentioned teaching two times. That's coz I was applying for a teaching job. I could easily change it to 'laying carpets' or whatever. That's called 'tailoring your CV to the job you want'. Of course, it helps if you have some related experience, which is where the next section comes in - Employment History. 



Section 2 - "Employment History"


This is a list of relevant jobs you've had. Unrelated jobs come in a separate section. We don't have much space, so just describe the most awesome things you did. Like so:


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That's a ridiculously impressive teaching CV. What if you don't have such a background? Pfft. Just make it up. Don't lie exactly, but if you've ever straightened a rug or rolled your toes on a bathroom mat you've got carpet laying experience. If you're really struggling, write some vague aspirational fluff and extend the next section.




Section 3 - "Other Employment" and "Education"

Here you can take some liberties, smooth over gaps in your employment history, and exaggerate the value of free online courses you did.


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Section 4 - "Andrew is a God Among Men"

In an elegant column on the left of my page, I've added some genuine feedback from students. You can write whatever you want on yours, because there's no way anyone could ever check. 

(I suppose in a job interview someone might ask for the original, but you can just well up with tears and say 'she died'. That should be an end to it.)

Here's mine:


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And now a look at how it all fits together.


Notice the clean lines, the subtle use of negative space. If its harmonies aren't resonating in your brain like the first time you saw a Yin/Yang symbol, there's something desperately off about your neurology.

(Photos on CVs are normal in Switzerland. If you live in a more modern economy, you can use that space for a graphic that represents your personality, such as a picture of a tree. Or just write the word YES three times in Comic Sans.)

There's my guide to creating the perfect CV. Go, ye, into the job market, and prosper!


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1 comment:

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