A CV is a paper copy of you … it’s just another way to introduce yourself. Think of it like an advert – you’re selling yourself to the person you send your CV to The four most typical sections covered by a CV are: Relevant skills What sort of things have you done that will make you a good fit for the job? This could be things like having a clean driving license, or having a Key Skill in Communications or Application of Number… Work experience Have you done any similar work in the past? What did you learn from your other jobs that will make you better at this one? If you don’t have much work experience, think about what other things you have done – sports teams, drama groups, childcare, activities at school etc.
Education and Training This should sum up your time at school and any training you have done since. What qualifications do you have? You can mention the training you’ve received from the Volunteer programme… Personal Interests Be prepared to talk about any hobbies you write down here – don’t make them up! Think about what is relevant for this section. If you were applying for a job in a Sports Centre for example, you might want to say that you enjoyed keeping fit, swimming etc.
Employers look at your CV to see what experience you have, and match that experience with the job on offer You can tailor your CV to suit different job applications – but ALWAYS tell the truth!
Some of the things employers are looking for: Experience: Make the most of what you’ve done. Things outside of work might be a good thing to include: for example, have you played for a sports team? You could talk about teamwork .
Results: Let’s say you worked in a shop - what did you achieve ? For example, did you deal with customer complaints, leaving the manager free to get on with his/her job?
You may have overcome obstacles in the past – rather than writing about the obstacles, try to show how you overcame them. Be positive!
DON’T … Lie Sell yourself short – think carefully about how you can describe things Over-exaggerate what you have done DO … Check your spellings – ask someone to read it through for you Be positive – you’ve got more to write about than you think!
Be prepared to talk about everything you include on your CV …
Be clear, but make sure it makes sense. Here’s a bad example from real life: “I have an excellent track record, although I am not a horse…”
WHAT AM I GOOD AT?
Good at talking to people
WHAT HAVE I DONE WHICH PROVES THIS?
Helped my team to get along during the Prince’s Trust programme Worked in a shop dealing with customer complaints
HOW CAN I USE THIS?
Work involving teams or jobs with a customer focus
I HAVE ONLY 3 - 4 WORDS TO DESCRIBE WHAT I AM GOOD AT… Strong Communication Skills
Understand people in my team who are less confident. Remember to listen
HOW CAN I IMPROVE AT THIS?
IF THE PHONE RINGS …
If you’re eating, let the phone ring for a few seconds before answering – don’t talk with your mouth full !
Answer in as few rings as possible – try and get to the call by the time it has rung three times Always hold the phone directly in front of your mouth so that people can hear you
Greet the person … tell them who you work for … introduce yourself … 4. offer to help
“Good morning, Coopers Computers – Richard speaking … How can I help?”
IF IT’S NOT FOR YOU …
Make sure you know how the phone works – will you have to know how to transfer a call? Ask someone working near you … If you have to leave someone on the line while you find an answer for them, put the phone down gently on your desk Avoid having conversations with other people while you’re talking to someone on the telephone If you need to discuss the call with someone else, make sure you put the person on hold before discussing his or her situation with your colleague If you’re going to put someone on hold, ask if that’s OK – tell them what’s going to happen – are they going to hear music? Or will it just bleep?
“ I’m afraid I’m going to have to ask a colleague for some further details. Will it be OK to put you on hold? I should be back within two minutes. ”
IF YOU NEED TO MAKE AN IMPORTANT CALL …
Plan in advance – you don’t have to have a script, but what information do you need to find out? Write yourself a list … Check you’ve got the right number Introduce yourself clearly, and tell the person what you are calling about Check that the person isn’t in the middle of something, and has time to talk to you Don’t rush – give yourself time. People will understand if you say “Before I go, let me just check that I have all the information I need” …
“ It’s Richard here from Coopers Computers. I’m calling about the meeting on 26 th November. Is now a good time for you to talk? ”
IF YOU NEED TO TAKE A MESSAGE FOR SOMEONE …
Write your message down clearly and accurately – make sure the person will be able to read your writing Write down: Who the message is for The name of the person who called Where the person was calling from The caller's telephone number – including their area code and/or extension The details of the message At the bottom of the the message, write down your name, the date and the time of the call. That way the person will be able to find you if they have any questions.
If you’re not sure you have the message right, ask the caller if you can read it back to them – every message is important even if it doesn’t sound like much to you …
“ I’m afraid she’s not here right now. This is Richard speaking - can I take a message for her? ”