5 Textbook CV Mistakes You Need to Fix Today

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Are you tired of sending out the same, uninspiring CV to employers, knowing that your stilted resume is doing you no real favours? All too often the CVs that employers receive are ineffective, in that they reveal nothing about the true capabilities and personality of the candidate behind them.

The time has come to ditch the generic language and start owning your CV and the story it tells. Omit clichés and contrived, old-hat formulas, and you may find that you have more luck with being called in for interviews.

Are you making these CV mistakes? Remedy them now!

Mistake #1 Not injecting personality

Sorting this mistake is key to mastering the rest of these classic CV bugbears. How can you expect an employer to see you as a real, 3D, living and breathing candidate when your CV is lifeless utterly fails in conveying your personality. One thing that you must do is ditch clichés. Do you really think that you will bag the job by telling the employer that you can ‘work well alone and as part of a team’? Ridding your CV of platitudes is the first step to creating a resume with real impact.

 Mistake #2 Not telling a great story

Most of us aim to follow the traditional chronological model when writing a CV. While there is nothing wrong with this, don’t let the traditional format stifle your ability to tell the story of your career so far. Employers will be far more willing to read on if you can tell your career as a tale, rather than as a series of monotonous bullet-points.

Mistake #3 Third-person narrative

You are the protagonist of your life, not the omniscient narrator. Stop talking about yourself in the third person! While you may feel that this will give your CV a more professional tone, writing in the first-person will give your CV a sense of life and authenticity that becomes lost when you start referring to yourself as ‘the candidate’.

Mistake #4 Not Identifying the problem you aim to solve

Perhaps the most significant factor in distinguishing yourself from the rest of the crowd is the ability to effectively identify and summarise how you will be of benefit. There is a reason why the employer is advertising for new staff. Think of the problems that they need you to solve for their business and make it clear that you are equipped and willing to deal with this pain.

Mistake #5 Not including a ‘high points’ montage

It’s easy to write  a list of the tasks that have fallen into your remit in previous roles, but it might be more difficult to identify high points or achievements that will impress prospective employers. Have a brainstorming session and think of all the things you have done that you are most proud of. This will distinguish you as  results-oriented candidate, and again, will help to tell your unique story.


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