I see a lot of CVs and the thing that most people struggle with is being detailed enough about what they do in their current job. The job you’re doing at the moment, particularly if you’ve been doing it for several years, is what’s going to get you your next job so it’s important you let future employers know exactly what you do so they can get a good picture of what you’re capable of.
One way to make sure you’re selling your experience well is to keep a log of everything you do on a daily basis over a two week period. You’ll be amazed how many things you do that you’d never think to add to your CV.
Once you’ve got that far, it’s time to make a list of all your responsibilities. Let’s take a typical PR account director. On their CV it’s likely they’ll have all the following:
- Account management and client liaison
- Team management
- New business pitching
- Building strong relationships with journalists
Nothing wrong with that, you might think, it tells you what they do. Now let’s look at a more detailed version:
- Account management. Clients include London Pride, Thorpe Park, Space Invader crisps, The Ivy, Oxford Landing wines and The London Eye.
- Client liaison. Weekly client reports, quarterly client updates and lead on the client relationships.
- Team management. Currently managing a team of three account managers, two senior account executives, an account executive and several interns. I also sit on the agency’s HR management committee and am particularly keen on developing entry-level pracitioners by offering mentoring and support.
- New business pitching. In the last twelve months I’ve pitched for ten clients, including developing the marketing materials and delivering the presentation pitch, and won nine of those pitches.
- Building strong relationships with journalists and media including the Evening Standard, Metro, The Guardian, The One Show and This Morning.
See the difference when you add the detail? Employers immediately know which sectors you’ve got relevant experience in, how strong your journalist relationships are, the size of team you’re managing and what your client relationship responsibilies are. It’s a much clearer picture of your experience and gives you room to really expand on what your strongest skills are.