How to create a CV – the pancake way!
Pancakes are simple and satisfying and that’s just how you should feel about creating your CV.
Trouble is CVs often get overly complicated or overlooked and they end up with too much information or not enough.
I've created a simple recipe for you to follow so that your CV doesn't end up as flat as a pancake!
This is a traditional Shrove Tuesday pancake recipe taken from the BBC:
100g plain flour
2 large eggs
I tablespoon oil
Pinch of salt
Put the ingredients in a bowl. Whisk to form a batter. Set aside for 30 minutes.
Heat a small frying pan. Wipe the sides with oil. Cook the pancakes for 1 minute each side when the pan is hot. Keep the cooked pancakes in a low oven as you go.
Serve the pancakes with lemon and sugar (or your favourite filling).
It makes 12 pancakes.
Sounds easy right?
Well so is making your CV if you do it this way!
Recipe for a simple CV (pancake style)
1. Gather up all the basic ingredients that you need to create the CV structure:
Contact phone and email address
Date you started – present / what you’re doing now / which company/brand you’re doing it for
Dates you did it / what you did / which company/brand you did it for
Next, for each role, you’ll need two or three bullet points to describe the responsibilities including a bit of detail on the reporting structure – keep it simple.
In pancake terms, yours are now sitting in the low oven keeping warm whilst you prepare to add the flavour!
2. Now you’re ready to start adding results and achievements. This is how to give your CV personality.
Think of it like squeezing a lemon.
It’s juicy but it’s not sweet.
It’s an opportunity for you to share challenges, successes and grit!
Narrow down a long list to your top two or three achievements for each role.
3. Then write a short overview of your career and a summary of your skills and so put them near the top of your CV between the contact details and your career history.
For example, if you’re a sales director and you’ve got a network of contacts in several regions but currently only look after one market you'd want to emphasize your broader experience.
Or say you’re a merchandise director working in a brand but you’ve also worked with branded product in department stores – you'd probably want to highlight that skill set.
In my case, I worked in executive search firms for 15 years but before that, I set up the in-house recruitment and retail training department for Armani, Prada, Donna Karan and DKNY so that gives me a different set of skills and experience to a classic headhunter.
Which reminds me – if you’ve worked with ‘eye-catching’ brands you should add that in your summary too.
4. Finally, you get to add the sugar - the finishing touches!
Check your spelling and formatting, then ask a couple of friends to read it for meaning.
And now your CV is ready to serve!
Enjoy your pancakes and if you need a gluten-free, dairy-free recipe - I've found one!
Tracy Short & Co offers executive career coaching, recruitment & talent services, and exclusive networking meet-ups.
Tracy has a unique approach to career success – a fresh alternative to traditional career coaching and executive headhunters.
Get in touch to find out how I can help you or your company.