Anyone will tell you that after completing your course, the first significant step in finding a job is the creation of your CV. First impressions are crucial and this will be a potential employer’s first glimpse of who you are, ideally prompting them to offer you an interview.
Many of us at findcourses.co.uk are fans of modern fiction, and this prompted us to wonder what the CVs of some of our favourite fictional characters might look like. Read on to see how many of them you recognise, and how good (or bad) their CVs are!
After a stressful 78 years of work, this elderly gentleman is not adjusting well to retirement. A recent immigrant to the land of Valinor, he is now looking for employment in his new home to keep himself from getting too bored.
As you can see, his work and education histories are fairly extensive, with various achievements as testament to his breadth of wisdom and strength of character. His references are also impressive, providing potential employers with two wise and reputable individuals.
Like most people, his CV is by no means perfect. While an interest in reading suggests a thirst for knowledge, he partakes in other activities & hobbies that are somewhat less savoury – this is something that could throw anyone reviewing him. However, his listed skills & talents are exceedingly rare, meaning that an employer may be willing to overlook his unusual interests in order to integrate someone with his uncommon skillset into their company.
This individual has recently found himself out of work and unable to remain self-employed after losing his primary means of generating income.
While he has over twenty years of experience in his field (making him a potentially great asset to the right company), it seems that years of being his own boss has made him somewhat belligerent and lacking in respect, judging by the personal statement. Many organisations might ignore his application based on his inappropriate tone of voice.
When writing your CV, you need to provide full disclosure if you have a criminal record. While this man has done that, his attempt to cover up his crimes by describing them as ‘endorsements’ is a rather poor charade that could irritate an employer. However, considering the industry in which he is looking for work, his record may be considered a positive by many. The same can be said for his hobbies, some of which suggest a personality a little too easily led by vice and depravity. While many organisations in his field might regard this as a bonus, it could still become a great source of anguish for a prospective company’s HR department.
A confident tone in your CV can be important: it can reassure employers and give the impression that you are ready for the role you’re applying for. However, this lady’s CV shows that you can have too much of a good thing. Her personal statement in particular could suggest insecurity hidden beneath a veneer of audacity; although considering her skillset, some employers might feel encouraged by this level of certainty. The same cannot be said for her references – one should always provide the names and contact details of two trustworthy individuals willing to testify for your value as an employee.
Her education and experience are more encouraging. Studying at an illustrious or impressive institution implies a high standard of training, and her many years teaching at the same place of work shows that she can hold down a long-term job. Her dalliance in writing adds another facet to her skillset that could help set her above competitors.
The strength of her skills is that, although not particularly varied, they explicitly specify her knowledge in each of the categories of her profession. This isn’t always necessary but can be effective if applied correctly.
The young man whose CV we’ll be studying next has an advanced education and great experience in one field but is looking to start again and make a career change. While the progression he made in his previous career implies drive and a willingness to work, his lack of professional experience outside of that could somewhat limit his options.
One problem is the vagueness of his personal statement – it suggests that he might have something to hide. The ambiguous mention of his past work may leave potential employers feeling like he might have difficulties working with other people. However, his past professional successes may lead them to overlook that slip-up.
The ‘Personality Traits’ section could be considered a little unnecessary – his reasons for including this section are likely a mystery to all but himself. Similarly, while it is good to include some hobbies and interests on your CV, this case study has a few too many, particularly considering what some of them are. The ‘Skills’ section is better put together, showcasing an aptitude for both academic and practical work.
This next CV is a particularly ambitious one, based on the job this man is applying for. The tone of his introduction is more casual than one might hope, and the points it makes are not especially salient or effective in showcasing why he would be the best man for the job. Nevertheless, his skills and previous experience demonstrate an open-minded and well-rounded individual, willing and able to turn his hand to a variety of different professions. His degree from the University of Alabama shows a good standard of education and both of his awards will help set him apart from the competition. His activities & hobbies are also commendable: they suggest that he is likely a health-conscious man (judging by his interest in sport and exercise) with a wholesome nature.
His references could be more comprehensive – generally speaking, one would expect to see more than one reference on a CV. However, the single reference that has been provided should be useful, being that of his old boss.
About the Author
Oli is a writer passionate about storytelling and the transformative power of learning. At findcourses.co.uk, he is responsible for creating useful articles that guide training buyers towards the correct L&D solutions for their needs.