Your CV: How to Write a Generic / ‘Bare Bones’ Personal Profile

Following yesterday’s discussion in my Facebook Group, The Killer CV Hangout, around the DRAMA of writing a Personal Profile and why we all seem to struggle to ‘sell ourselves’ in this section, I’ve put together a little guide to help you.

It really doesn’t have to be as complicated as you think.

You’ll know by now that I ALWAYS bang on and on about how you should re-write your personal profile based on the job that you’re applying for (because you will find that you already have the information written for you, in the job description/advert that has led you to the job). So, you should do this as standard practice with EVERY job you apply for. Sure, it takes more time, but it’s more likely to get you a response. Soz.

SO – What if you want to put a CV together so that it’s READY to go, before you’ve even found a job to apply for? You just want to get it ready and waiting; or perhaps you want a generic version of your CV to shoot off to a Recruitment Agency as an introduction? (I know this one place, it’s called HotSeat Recruitment, it’s pretty good.)

If you want to do this, let’s get a ‘bare bones’ structure in place.

The format I would take when writing a generic Personal Profile would be based around three points:

  1. One sentence that sums up my ‘Title’, backed up with a summary of at least three areas of expertise
  2. A point of interest or a ‘stand out’ quality of mine, to further highlight my skillset
  3. Finishing with a statement on the direction I am looking to take my career in

For example (I’ve based this on an Administrator, for the purpose of this exercise):

  1. An experienced Administrator; familiar with a variety of office support tasks including reception duties, diary management, travel arrangements and basic accounts duties
  2. PC literate and proficient in MS Office including Word, Excel, Outlook and Access with fast, accurate typing skills
  3. Looking for a new opportunity within an organisation that offers progression and career development

Merged together into a paragraph, like so:

PERSONAL PROFILE

An experienced Administrator; familiar with a variety of office support tasks including reception duties, diary management, travel arrangements and basic accounts duties. PC literate and proficient in MS Office including Word, Excel, Outlook and Access with fast, accurate typing skills. Looking for a new opportunity within an organisation that offers progression and career development.

Ta-dah!

Yep, I know. It’s boring as. You’ll see that this is REALLY generic and doesn’t really show much in the way of personality or unique skills. But the point of this exercise is for you to see the format that can be used to create a standard Profile within your CV to kick things off.

As soon as you’re ready to apply for a job, you’ll return to your CV to really flesh it out, using the information you already have at your disposal – such as the job description, person specification, job advert, company website.

This is the point that the CV will really come alive and showcase your skills, showing you as THE person for the job. Because you will see then what the job is all about and you’ll see the problem that the Recruiter is trying to solve.

Until you have this information (i.e. you have the job you’re ready to apply for) then you’re trying to solve a problem without knowing what the problem IS. And that’s when you get frustrated and it feels like an impossible task.

Need a bit more guidance on this? Get in touch, tell me what you’re struggling with. Better still, come join my Killer CV Hangout Group, I’d love to have you there.

Have a great day everyone, happy CV writing!

Danielle ❤ x

danielle@hotseatrecruitment.co.uk

One thought on “Your CV: How to Write a Generic / ‘Bare Bones’ Personal Profile

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