send me your cv
Back in the day when I kicked-off my highly dubious recruiting career (1984 for the pedants out there) we had a saying – lies, damn lies & CVs – and yes, each industry & profession did indeed have its own substituted version of this modern-day proverb. So, at the risk of stating the bleedin’ obvious, each and every CV was approached with a certain amount of scepticism, if not a huge pinch of salt.
However, the one thing you could be pretty sure of, was that at least it was the author’s exaggerations, their own impressions what they’d actually got up to in the course of gainful employ: of course a consistent 100% target over-achievement on all quarterly sales figures was inconsistent with being booted outta the door after only thirteen months with no referee willing to speak in your defence; two ‘three month contracts’ smacked of not getting through the necessary probation period and hinted strongly at personal hygiene issues; positions measured in weeks (or less!) merely highlighted the need to buy an alarm clock and stop dropping so many ecstasy tabs at the weekend rave. CV writing remained a black art and everyone, for better or for worse, had a bash at compiling their own. My how we laughed.
Today’s personal synopses leave me stone cold. We have become a nation of ‘motivated’, ‘energised’ and ‘creative’ ‘individuals’ where everyone, but everyone, is able to operate on their jack-jones or as part of a team whilst ‘delivering’ results of the highest order, superseding everyone’s expectations. Furthermore, whilst on their ‘journey of self-discovery’ everyone is ‘passionate’. If you truly are passionate about supply chain logistics with a bias towards frozen wholefood produce, you do truly need to get out more, and start by closing the door behind you. Truly. The need to stress an ‘unprecedented successful track record’ means you’re an inveterate failure with an inability to see things through to completion, and the merest mention of ‘experience’ & ‘extensive’ in the same paragraph informs me you’ve lived your life in a cold-war bunker without power or running water.
The constant use of tired, repetitive, generalist, and nonsensical terms & phrases indicates a complete lack of imagination, poor vocabulary & diction and highlight an avoidance of any personal ingenuity. We are speaking in cliché and self-congratulatory terms but this buzzword bingo serves no purpose whatsoever. Alan Sugar, you have much to answer for. My advice is simple: tell it as it is. At the risk of being seen as a motivated, energised & creative individual, tell me you’re bored with your daily grind, tell me your boss creeps you out, tell me you’re rapidly developing a coke-habit just to get through each day, tell me anything that’s truthful but please don’t tell me you’re passionate!