CV Writing Warning to My Clients

Just amended my CV Writing Service info. Added this…

+++++++

WARNING: MY SERVICE MAY NOT BE RIGHT FOR YOU!

This is for your protection. And mine.

If you’re looking for a traditional / old-school CV – 10 (or even 5!) pages long, a cover page with a clip-art image of two people shaking hands on it with your name in big bold type and enveloped in scrolls … if you’re looking for a CV that begins with your “Personal Details” followed by your “Secondary School Details” … a CV that has long lists of your “Duties and Responsibilities” … then let me be clear, my service is NOT for you.

However … IF you’re willing to step outside your comfort zone a little, if you feel it’s time to ‘push the envelope’ in your efforts to market yourself, if you’re willing to take a bolder, fresher, more to the point approach in which you distinguish yourself (in a competitive and cluttered job market, not a bad idea!); IF you view yourself as a ‘business’; IF you want to present yourself as a ‘business solution’ to a company (whether you’re a PA or CEO) in just 2 or 3 pages (international standard)…

… THEN you’re the kind of person I LOVE dealing with. You’re the
reason I do what I do. And together we’ll get great results.

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Really, no-one (no employer) wants long. No-one wants boring. No-one wants long lists. They want hard-hitting value. Relevant to their needs.

If your CV focuses strongly on your best achievements, your best qualifications & skills, your best qualities AND translates them clearly into value / benefits for the employer…

THEN adding long lists of minutae is unlikely to do anything other than bloat & confuse and fragment attention of the reader. You want a few main points (your best), hammered home hard. If a few points (your best) – hammered home hard – don’t make the impact you need, NO list of minute details is gonna help.

Some Recent – and Helpful – Job Search Related Articles and Links

Here are some job search, CV and job application cover letter ideas for you.

Cover Letter for Job Application:

http://www.wowcv.net/cover-letter-for-job-application/

Some quick ideas on how to write a powerful job application cover letter. And a template.

Example of a CV that Makes an Impact:

http://www.wowcv.net/example-of-a-cv/

http://www.wowcv.net/cv-template-word/

Some guidelines, some samples to help you. Of course, remember that this is just a generic example & ideas. When I write your CV it gets highly personal! And therefore much more powerful in distinguishing you, helping you to get more job interviews, more job offers, more often.

Where To Find Jobs:

http://www.wowcv.net/where-to-find-jobs/

There are many places, some work, some don’t. Be aware! You could be wasting your time and losing hope as a result. On the other hand you could follow these ideas to get to what works in the job market more quickly.

If You’re Looking for Someone to Write Your CV – Here’s What to Look For

http://www.wowcv.net/cv-writer-how-to-choose/

Don’t engage a CV writing service until you’ve read these guidelines.

Writing an ‘Instant-Hit’ CV

http://www.wowcv.net/writing-an-instant-hit-cv/

Forget all you’ve been told about a CV. THESE are the principles to follow.

2 Things You Need to Dig Yourself Out of a Job Hunting Hole

Wanna know what 2 things you need to dig yourself out of a job hunting hole? 

First, here’s what it’s not:

  • A new CV (it can make a huge and immediate difference, but there are more important things.)
  • Another recruitment agent (you probably have tried many already.)
  • Someone generous to give you a chance. (If someone does, great! But you’re not going to bank on it.)
  • Another degree, diploma or course. (Always good to learn, but it’s probably not your ‘missing link.’)
  • The government to create new jobs. (They need to, they should. But let’s be real.)
  • A clean credit record.
  • To be a black male and a CA (SA)

Surprising, because those things come immediately to mind in the current job market. These things matter, sure. But there are more important things.

THE MORE IMPORTANT THINGS 

Take my son, Ethan. He’s 7. When we’re on the squash court, I’m teaching him how (limited though I am in my ability in the game). Ethan needs to know how to hold the racquet, how to stand, etc. Learning “how” is important. In anything.

And it’s true in your job hunt. There are things that work. And things that don’t work very well. Why keep doing things poorly or in an ineffective way? It’s frustrating. It’s enfuriating. It yields poor results. It takes too long.

So that’s the first way to dig yourself out of a job hunting hole. Do it right. And at this point I want you to make 100% sure you have a copy of my 100% freely available book: “12 Breakthrough Job Search Secrets – end your stalled and frustrating job search now.” It’ll tell you some ‘breakthrough’ truths about the job market, provide practical lessons and exercises, and give you a good shot of motivation. Just send a blank e-mail to 12jss@getresponse.com to get it – I’ll send it to your inbox immediately.

BUT … what about the 2nd thing you need to dig yourself out?

WHAT’S THE 2ND THING? 

Aha! It’s actually the main thing. And I’m going to make you work for it. Only if you work for it, will you understand it. And it’s the very first of the 12 ‘breakthrough’ secrets in the book.

You could say, the secret revealed is a secret to life of Biblical proportions. And the associated exercises: “How to Practically Apply Secret #1” will kick your rear.

So send an e-mail to 12jss@getresponse.com and get it. Or search your e-mail / hard drive and you’ll find it from a previous occasion.

PLEASE, forward this post to anyone who you think may benefit. You are cool if you do.

IN CONCLUSION

Services I offer Job Hunters:

I write “guerrilla” CVs (ie. CVs that hit hard for you, that help you separate yourself from the masses, distinguish and brand yourself) (visit www.wowcv.net/guerrilla-cv to read more about it);

I offer interview coaching; and

I offer you membership to my Career & Success INNER CIRCLE – a member’s only website and the only place you can find my book: “Job Search Fast Track, Dynamite for Job Hunters.”

If you’d like to know more, ask. I’m at gerard [at] jobsearching.co.za

“But it’s the end of the year… not great for job hunting?!”

The client said:

 “But it’s the end of the year … not a great time for job hunting.”

Did you know there are things you could be doing to land a job even during the holidays? Or are you planning to just goof off and pick it up next year? Can you afford that approach?

The client is in the supply chain field. He’s very well qualified and has good experience. He’s just completed his Honours and wants a job after working for himself for 2 years (while studying).

Here’s my reply (sent yesterday):

Consider this: somewhere out there there’s someone (let’s call him Jack) heading up a big supply chain intensive operation. And it’s not going well. His holiday period is going to be more about his ulcer than his kids. Sleep will be fleeting. He will not rest.

You may well be the solution he needs.

He hasn’t advertised for anyone, he’s too busy and he’s been burned by agencies who don’t deliver. And he’s struggling to define exactly what he needs anyway. He’s not sure himself.

All he can think is this: “I need someone with fresh ideas, someone youngish, strong, hungry.”

Now, if you knew that during the holidays, a close friend of yours was going to spend an evening with our Jack here, and a good chunk of it is spent discussing how difficult he’s expecting 2012 to be and how he needs someone with ‘fresh legs’ – wouldn’t you want your friend to introduce you?

So, the question becomes: what are you doing within your circle of influence to make sure they know what you’re up to (in terms of job hunting and what a brilliant solution you are). Do they have your mini-CV – a hard hitting one or half pager or your ‘guerrilla CV’?

Have you told them exactly what you’re looking for … with energy, focus, enthusiasm. Do they know you for your excellent career so far?

That one random contact could provide you with the opportunity you’re looking for. Your 2012 could start with a big bang – instead of a deathly silence.

Be careful of the “nothing happens in Dec/Jan” approach!

Just by the way: in my Career & Success INNER CIRCLE, I detail a process (with examples, samples, scripts and exact instructions) of how to do all of the above – including how to write your own very, very smart “mini-CV”.

Want to become a member? E-mail me and I’ll send you the application form – gerard@careerandsuccess.info.

On a Personal Note: 1) Sent out the first “Gerard’s Marketing Monthly” yesterday – if you’re in business, own a business, want to start a business, in the newsletter I outline some low cost, critical, highly effective marketing ideas. Want it? Get it at no cost. Just send an e-mail to mkting@getresponse.com

2) My daughter Zoe, is having her prize giving tonight. Grade 3. She’s a candidate for the “top student” award. But I’m torn. Does an award like this matter? If she doesn’t get it, what then? Are awards like this actually good? What message does it send to everyone else? Is competition like this at this age a good thing? What should be rewarded – hard work, effort; or natural ability? I don’t actually care what happens, I think she’s great. Hopefully she knows that no matter what happens.

Also, remember I have a special deal on my “Guerrilla CV / Resume Writing” for December. Either visit the Facebook page for more: www.fb.com/guerrillaresumeandcv or just drop me an e-mail request to gerard@jobsearching.co.za

Adding New Force to Your Networking – a Quick Idea

It’s a panicky time of year if you’re a job hunter.

Business starts winding down. Holidays loom. A quiet period for job hunting. Everyone else seems to be going on holiday. It seems like another 2 months must go by before there’s any action in your job search.

And if your main job search method is applying via agencies and job ads, you could well be in that kind of trouble. It could work, in fact it’s essential you continue searching via those channels. But you’ve got to attack the problem on new fronts, more fronts.

And that’s where most people say: “Oh, please, I’ve tried everything else.”

Here’s the thing … you haven’t. Maybe you’ve “tried”. But to “try” is weak. Was it Yoda who said: “There is either do or do not. There is no try.” At the very least, there are things you could be doing better, with more power and effect.

For example: when you meet a new person, perhaps socially, they may know someone who is the direct link to your next cool job. But you don’t know what to say to them. You lack confidence. Even if they ask about your work situation, what you end up saying is vague and uncertain. You stumble, stutter.

The response you want – desperately – is for the new contact to say, “Hey, that’s interesting, you know I have a friend who’s in your field, he’s in quite a senior position, you should go see him.”

But you’re not going to get it with “vague” and “uncertain.”

Let’s say the question to you from the new friend is, “so, what do you do?”

So here are some practical questions to help you answer effectively:

 1) Do you have a quick, hard hitting verbal introduction ready for these occasions?

2) Once you’ve prepared it, have you practiced it over and over so that it’s easy to say, comfortable, conversational? (Don’t learn it off-by-heart – put a few “ums” in there, make it natural.

3) Is it longer than 20 seconds? Try to get it in under 20. You’ll be amazed at what you can pack in.

4) Are you explaining in your statement the specific benefit you bring to an employer? (My intro – as a CV writer, a ‘guerrilla’ CV writer – starts out by saying: “I write CVs that get job hunters hired fast.”)

Okay, construct yours now. Be ready to network this way. Within my INNER CIRCLE – a special members only website where you can get very advanced guidance and coaching on all this sort of stuff – I have a dedicated section 3 pages long explaining how to formulate your best “quick, hard hitting” verbal introduction. And INNER CIRCLE members can send me theirs for me to assess it personally.

Want to become a member? E-mail me and I’ll send you the application form – gerard@careerandsuccess.info.

On a Personal Note: are you interested in starting your own business – or are you running a small/medium sized business already? I’m launching a new monthly newsletter titled: “GERARD’S MARKETING MONTHLY – Ideas on how to get more customers, more sales, more cash and more success in your small business.”

It’s going to be fancy, properly formatted and all. If you’d like to get a copy of the 1st edition next week send an e-mail to mkting@getresponse.com

Also, I have a special deal on my “Guerrilla CV / Resume Writing” for November and December. Either visit the Facebook page for more: www.fb.com/guerrillaresumeandcv or just drop me an e-mail request to gerard@jobsearching.co.za

 

Free from the World’s Leading Job Search Book – “Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters”

Heard of the book “The Art of War”? In it Sun Tzu says:

 “The more you read and learn, the less your adversary will know.”

So here’s something free’ for you. It’s kindly made available by the co-author David Perry. His passion for the topic of job hunting is overwhelming. He’s a high end head-hunter in Canada and the USA – he knows all the tricks.

And last year he asked me to contribute a piece for the new edition of “Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters 3.0”, and I did. The book has the tagline: “How to Stand Out form the Crowd and Tap into the Hidden Job Market Using Social Media and 999 Other Tactics Today”.

It’s awesome. And if you follow this link you’ll get 43 pages of it right now.

 http://dl.dropbox.com/u/26879522/GM4JH_Preview.pdf

If you’re a recruiter / personnel agent DO NOT read this book!! Here’s what David says to you in the foreword:

“Please don‘t buy this book! I haven‘t responded to any of the hate mail from the recruiters who have accused me of trying to put them out of business, and I won‘t respond to yours. “BTW: Smart recruiters have adopted the tactics in this book to help them close more deals.”

Yep, I get hate mail too here in SA for daring to suggest that personnel agents and job ads may not be your only route to your next job! So this book – and membership of my INNER CIRCLE – is only for those who follow the spirit of Lance Armstrong:

 “Through my illness I learned rejection. I was written off. That was the moment I thought, Okay, game on. No prisoners. Everybody‘s going down.”

Go get it.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/26879522/GM4JH_Preview.pdf

Personal Note – got back from squash on Wed evening and the family was trying to put up the trampoline. They got half the mat hooked up with the springs. And couldn’t go further. I figured there must be some trick. So I went to YouTube, looked for “set up a trampoline” and immediately got a 3 minute video in which the tricks were revealed. Next morning the trampoline was sorted in a few minutes.

Sometimes it’s time to get expert help – with your CV, with your job hunt too.

www.wowcv.netwww.careerandsuccess.info

Stuck in a No Promotion, Fade-in-to-the-Background Job?

Sometimes you get stuck in your career or job. And it’s no-one’s fault. Yet.

Employers just want a job done | You just want a job.

To a point, that formula works.

But as life has a habit of showing one, ‘a job’ isn’t all you need: eventually also you need challenge, recognition, advancement, a feeling that you’re appreciated, that you’re making a difference.

And that’s something you’ve got to take charge of. Some – usually only very large – employers try helping you with that, but in the end, here’s the truth:

It’s all up to you. Actually.

And in the Career & Success INNER CIRCLE, I’m helping members with that. I’ve just added 2 awesome new resources, guides you can read in 15 minutes each, both containing cutting edge ideas for personal marketing, getting ahead, reinvigorating your job and career, lifting it to new heights.

There are practical ideas that will kick your @$$ into shape!

Go here, download the application form: www.careerandsuccess.info

NOW, from here on, it’s your fault if you stay stuck in a no-promotion, fade-in-to-the-background job.

 

 

Job Search – Power it Up, Make it Fast

Job searching is tough. How can you make it all happen faster? What can you do to improve – to get more interviews and more job offers?

Here’s an article written by Impti du Toit for the Cape Argus after an interview with me.

What Makes a Good Job Hunt?

Job-hunting coach and CV writer Gerard le Roux, founder of the Job Search Clinic, says job-seekers have to be smart across all areas of the job searching “landscape” to get more job interviews and more job offers, enabling them to find a great position or career that really engages their strengths and perhaps even their passions.

Is There a Job Search ‘Quick Fix’?

Many job-hunters still hope for a “quick fix” job search solution, with agencies and employment websites often seen as an “easy” path to employment, allowing a candidate simply send their CV through, get a call, go for the interview and get the job.

“But the reality is different,” says Le Roux. “The job market is a strange place where even the best job applicant isn’t guaranteed instant success. And focusing your job search only on common job search channels, like agencies and employment websites, may yield disappointing results.”

Job Search Improvements

A job search isn’t just about skills, qualifications and experience, or even your CV and ability to interview well. “It has much more to do with the whole of you: your attitude, your focus, your mental attitude and how you approach the job search process,” he says.

“For example, your CV could be great, but if you have the attitude that the world owes you a favour, it’s likely to turn off a potential employer. Or you might have all the answers to tough interview questions, but if you crumble and fall apart after one rejection, you will lessen your chances of finding a job.”

He points out that even if you have great work experience, being out of shape, unhealthy and low on self-esteem can send the wrong message to a prospective employer, perhaps signalling that you are battling to hold your life together.

“So you’ve got to start with ‘you’. You’ve got to be strong, resilient and smart in your job search. You have to understand, for example, that finding a job is a business process. Employers aren’t in business for philanthropy: they hire people to get some benefit. In every element of your job search – including your CV, covering letter, the interview, and the follow up – you should look for ways to communicate how you can be of value, how you can make a difference, and how you can help their business.”

These are some of the foundation principles of an effective job hunt, and if you don’t start by applying them you won’t be as successful, he says.

His second piece of advice is that job-seekers should know what they really want. “Having a clear direction, a sense of purpose and a vision for ourselves, our lives, and our career has a powerful, effect on what we achieve in life,” he says.

“Along our course in life – most often very early on – we somehow lose our way. We may end up being herded into a career direction by default. So we end up making a living, but it’s a slog. We have a job, but it’s a job we have to endure. We’re happy to be employed, but our work doesn’t engage our real passions, interests and talents.”

The consequences of accepting this situation and not paying quality attention to our career direction are dire: stress, depression, desperation, poor work performance and burnout. Instead we need to find what job really excites us, and what industry or sector brings a sparkle to our eye.

“I’m not suggesting that you should just resign your job to go off and save the whales, for example, but at least be aware that it is possible to search for and find work that you can be more passionate about. Define what will make you happy and then work out a plan to get there. It may take some time, but it’s a worthwhile exercise.”

Your Job Search is a Sale

He also advocates that job seekers should determine what value they are offering to potential employers. “Your job search is really just the process of selling yourself,” he says. “You’re offering what you have in the way of skills, knowledge, expertise and qualifications to someone willing to pay for it. It’s a sale or trade.

You are saying, ‘I’ll give you my expertise and experience, and you give me this salary and benefits’.”

Le Roux says this concept seems to elude many job-hunters. “When I ask them what benefits they provide, they give answers such as: ‘I manage production’ or ‘I am the Financial Manager’. They focus on their job title, their duties and responsibilities. But this gives an employer no idea of their value to their business.”

If you are not telling an employer how your focus is to build efficiency, generate revenue, save money, give better service, create systems to ensure delivery of products, raise customer satisfaction levels or motivate people to new heights of productivity, or are not giving specific figures or examples to add credibility, then you are not coming across as strongly as you could, he says.

Job Hunting Methods – Some Work Better Than Others

Le Roux says you also need to identify what job-hunting methods will yield the best results for your efforts. “If you were looking for gold, you may want to first establish the kind of rock formations and geological strata that gold is likely to appear in. Looking on the beach may be a comfortable environment, but will it be productive? The job market is no different: you need to decide where you are going to spend most of your time and energy looking.”

While job advertisements, agencies and websites play a valuable role in the marketplace and should form part of a job search plan, job seekers should also use alternative methods to improve their chances of finding employment, he says.

For example, he suggested to someone who had been fruitlessly searching for a job for 10 months that she might start visiting every business in her area once a week; get to know the names of local business men and women, and meet them any way she could; and that she could offer to help them using her skills, or offer to work for a business part-time or casually.

He points out that every method will not work for every job-hunter, but by taking a more ‘guerrilla’ style approach you will be giving yourself a competitive edge. On his website, Le Roux provides many ideas on alternative job search measures, as well as support to assist in this respect.

His free guidance on running a successful job search campaign covers five other critical job hunting areas apart from the tips provided here, including your CV, covering letters, job interviews and remaining mentally strong during the process.

Other features of the site are a free job-hunting e-course sent via e-mail to subscribers, and the facility to ask a “Burning Question” relating to your personal job hunt, which Le Roux will answer on his blog, on which he shares his weekly insights into what works and what doesn’t in the real world of job hunting.

Resources:

  • Free Registration to Weekly Job Search Advice eColumn – send an e-mail to jobsearchclinic [at] getresponse.com
  • Free Job Search eCourse – send an e-mail to 12jss [at] getresponse.com
  • Info on how to write your CV – www.wowcv.net
  • “Get a Job Fast” Programme – only available at www.careerandsuccess.info

 

Are You Facing Obstacles in the Job Market?

You may have credit problems. You may be on the wrong side of 50. You may be a white male in a BEE world.

You may not have a degree. You may have had 3 jobs this year already. You may have been fired or have a CCMA case pending.

These are all “obstacles” in the job market. And you can respond in one of two ways.

1) You can focus on that obstacle, look for how true it is in everything you do in your job hunt.

Someone doesn’t return a call? “Oh, it’s because of my credit record.” Don’t get response to your applications? “Oh, it’s because I’m white. This is unfair.” Don’t get a call back after an interview? “Oh, it’s because I’m over 50.” Or “Oh, it’s because I’m black and not English first language.”

Those feelings are real. And the situations feel hopeless at the time.

But … now let’s look at a proven truth:

When you have obstacles – some employers won’t hire you. And some will. Your job is to find those who will.

Those employers that will are out there. And there are many of them. In fact most businesses are small or medium sized. And they often hire less than perfect people. The hire ‘solutions’ who present themselves at the right time.

So that understanding helps us understand what “response 2” should be.

2) We can hammer hard at finding employers who will hire us.

And they are all around you. Don’t think for a minute that those companies hide behind employment agencies, job ads, or job website applications. Those companies have real people in them. People with problems. People who just need a solution.

So the best response to obstacles in the job market is to hammer hard at two things: 1) meeting people, anyone who is a decision maker in business, anyone who may be able to refer you to someone who is – even your Gran is okay!

And 2) figuring out what solution, what benefits you provide to a business – and hammering that message hard in your CV, letters, in every meeting, in every interaction, all the time.

Are you doing that? Be critical of your job search campaign: are you being overly affected by “obstacles” – responding negatively, blaming and complaining? Or are you taking what you’ve got, the good stuff, and nailing that?

If you need help with the practical application of the above, please join my  Career & Success INNER CIRCLE – a members only website loaded with my best ideas, practical examples and step-by-step guides to help you. See it here: www.careerandsuccess.info. Or just e-mail me for more info: gerard [at] jobsearching.co.za

 

Survey Results

Dont’ you hate it when you find out you what you were doing was a waste of time? You climbed the ladder … but it was against the wrong wall! (To borrow a Covey analogy.)

You used the “Magic Drops” you saw advertised on TV to lose weight, but actually the “lose weight” part wasn’t in the drops, but in the “calorie controlled diet” mentioned the very small print – in the part where it said “Only effective as part of a calorie controlled diet.”

Your ladder was against the wrong wall!

And so it is with job hunting. It’s why I did a survey a number of weeks ago about how people actually find the jobs they’re in. In other words, when job hunting, what building or wall should you put your ladder up against.

Here are the results:

How did you find your current or most recent job?

  • Option 1 – Job search website (like CareerJunction, PNet, etc)
    8% Answered “yes”
  • Option 2 – Employment/Personnel Agency, Labour Broker
    17% Answered “yes”
  • Option 3 – From a newspaper job ad placed by the company
    17% Answered “yes”
  • Option 4 – Via a referral from a friend/colleague/family member
    51% Answered “yes”
  • Option 5 – Through you approaching the company directly
    7% Answered “yes”
  • Option 6 – Via LinkedIn or Facebook or other social networks
    0% Answered “yes”

I have to say I was surprised. For some reason I thought that more would have said “yes” to personnel agencies. You and others who receive and respond to this e-column are quite sophisticated with technology, educated, and most live in the corporate world. I would have thought that they have success with agencies more than most.

But instead the “via a referral from a friend, etc” option secured more “yes” votes than all other methods put together! Astonishing.

So are you looking for a job? What are you doing to canvas your contacts? It’s likely where your next job lies waiting for you.

By the way … in my Career & Success INNER CIRCLE members only website I have a programme called “Get a Job Fast” and it provides you with all the tools, examples, scripts you need to find a job via your ‘network’. It’s all made very easy for you, even natural, none of the awkwardness that many associate with it.

See an application form here.