New Year, New Me, New CV!

by Steve Lee

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So now January has been and gone, how many (if any) are still smugly “dry”, smashing their resolutions or caning their gym memberships and instagram’ing hag-tag-gainz?? Or even all three??

With a trip to California booked in Feb for a bit of winter sunshine I decided it would be beneficial to make use of the gym membership and avoid the pub for a bit in order to get in shape for my trip, unfortunately California was cali-cancelled and I decided dry jan was a load of rubbish and went for a pint. 

I’ve never been a big believer in new year’s resolutions, I prefer having things to work towards all year round, and also, I hate to conform. But fair play to those smashing their personal goals, I salute you!

It’s never a bad thing wanting to better yourself, whether it’s health, home, family, spiritually, culturally, financially, or… to better your career. For most, a job is not just a job, it’s 50% (or more) of your life and can have a great (or not so great) impact on your entire well being. There tends to be a split divide in the attitude towards work, some work to live, others live to work. I believe there are those that sit between the two and I consider myself as one of those people. I target clients and candidates that I believe I will enjoy working with, those who have a good reputation, are smart, passionate and personable, the holy trinity! It’s because I’m selective that I enjoy my job, and hopefully provide a better service as a result. 

We constantly assess our performance and it’s during this process we plan our strategy. Something that will always stick with me is a statement from one of my first ever managers: “Perfect planning prevents piss poor performance” I wouldn’t recycle that exact phrase myself, but planning is key to all good things. We can all plan our social trips, holidays, events and gatherings with ease but planning our career paths with detail is something that sometimes just sits untouched on the to-do list.

Creative Personnel work largely on a search and selections basis (headhunting), the best client/candidate introductions we make are with inspiring, growing, entrepreneurial organisations, and candidates who excel in what they do and are overachieving in their current role. When someone is overachieving they should be well looked after, no smart employer wants to lose their golden boy or girl. Rewards, praise and status are great but are they getting you closer to where you need to be? We have to look at whether the opportunity offers long term gain for personal growth. It’s very easy to feel happy and content when everything around you seems to be going well, but look beyond and think ahead, is your current situation going to benefit you in 5-10years time?

Having drinks with a friend during the Christmas break I had a really interesting conversation, this friend works in an entirely different industry (entertainment) and has had a hugely successful career working for various reputable and prestigious groups in multiple different locations. Having moved from the North West to London he took on a role which was possibly oversold (many of us have been there) working in a senior management role with around 40 direct reports, decent pay and an environment he enjoyed. It would have been easy to lap it up and roll with the good times, but he immediately knew that this situation, while it was great, it wasn’t amazing and he was compromising for short term gain. So without hesitation, he figured out where he wanted to position himself in the market and decided that in order to get to the top he needed to go right back to the bottom. And he did. Walking away from the freedom of top level decision making, a nice pay packet and creative input to sitting in a large team with several managers above him and a lot less pay. But…. Joining an organisation which was globally recognised and a brand of the highest regard in the industry. A few short years later having worked his way to the top he was headhunted for a director role at a competitor and over trippled the salary he was earning before making this strategic move. So always ask yourself, if anything, what do you need to sacrifice in order to achieve your long term goals??

There are many different ways we can work out what we want and how to achieve it, breaking it down into short, medium and long term or simply aiming for the top and the quickest way to get there. Everyone has their own pace and goals, sectors and specialisms can mean varying rates of progression, every career is individual. A CV is a great tool for career planning, it doesn’t matter if you are not actively planning an immediate career move, a CV is record of achievement. What you’ve accomplished, what skills you’ve gained, what you do on a day to day basis that you take for granted but is not common practice elsewhere? So often I speak to people for a great length of time and after probing I realise they have done some amazing things they just assume everyone else does, but are not actually common practice and in some cases, revolutionary! As recruiters it’s our job to get CVs in front of the right people, but we also work with our candidates to create and tailor CVs from scratch.

So… year, new you? Ready to update that CV?

For CV or career assistance get in touch.




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