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Writing a professional CV is something that most people are totally clueless about; and if you intend taking your career to the acme, this is a skill you MUST master.
For undergraduates and graduates in Nigeria, most are never taught how to write a professional CV. What’s been taught are often outdated? This is not good at all, and if we keep on passing out graduates with little or no knowledge on how to craft a modern CV, one of the most important documents needed by those pursuing a career in the corporate world, it would be a real shame.
My aim here is to show you how to write a professional CV, and to do that we will have to have a look at how not to write a CV that so many are still sticking to.
Let’s have a go at it already.
Writing a Professional CV
The CV is an acronym for curriculum vitae and is an outline of all your life activities.
It should be noted that when it comes to writing a professional CV, there are certain rules to be checked out for the CV to be distinguishable and outstanding. You should also note that there are different kinds of CVs.
The purpose of this article is not to showcase the different kinds of CVs. We will do an article on that later on. Right now, we will have a look at the dos and do not, and then showcase a sample CV that you can use as a starting point to getting yours done.
Rules To Writing a Professional CV
Here are some rules when it comes to writing a professional CV.
- Do not title your CV with CURRICULUM VITAE as is very common. This is outdated and no longer part of the 21st century format of writing CVs. The recruiting officers already know it’s a CV so there is no need to remind him and make him feel like a dunce. Rather, title the CV with your name. You start with your SURNAME, separate with a comma and then add your other name.
- Do not attach a snapshot of yourself to your CV. This is not necessary and grossly unprofessional.
- Use quality paper for your CV. You want it to stand out, and using a quality paper makes it so.
- Do not photocopy your CV. Print out using a DeskJet Printer. This will make your CV look sharp and also show to the recruiting officer that you see the job important enough to print out an original.
- Avoid grammatical errors and typos. This is a taboo and MUST be avoided at all cost. Always go over the finished draft of your CV and then ask someone qualified to proofread it for you.
- Avoid the use of smileys and icons or the use of colourings while writing your CV; unless you are a graphic artist and going for such a position.
- Ensure you add at least two references in the reference section of the CV. Avoid the common REFERENCE UPON REQUEST statement.
- Make sure there are no greases or smears on your CV. This is really important.
The above are some key rules you should keep in mind while packaging your CV. Ignore them, and your CV ends up in the trash can.
Sample CV (Curriculum Vitae)
It wouldn’t be fair on your to package this article without showcasing a sample CV. Below is a sample CV as I promised in the beginning of this article.
Akhimien, Jackson James
Plot 4, Willi Estate, Warri, Delta State
CAREER OBJECTIVE: To work in a challenging environment that aims at obtaining the best from its employees and consequently recognizes and rewards production.
Date of birth: 10 April, 1980
Marital Status: Single
State: Edo State
Sept. 2001-2002: Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Masters Degree in International Relations
1993-1997: Mekai University, Chiba, Japan, B.Sc in international relations
Natural Group, Tokyo; Japan manufacturer of natural foods and supplements.
- Advised the main shop’s customers about organic and healthy foods
- Development of new businesses in smaller satellite stores; explaining the benefits of supplements and organic foods to potential new customers.
- Increased sales at both the main and satellite shops. The extra profits were used to expand the business by establishing a new shop.
- Computer literate: good knowledge of Microsoft Word and Excel, as well as email and the Internet.
- Fluent in the three main Nigerian languages; practical knowledge of English
- Exceptional Analytical skills
- Playing Chess and Scrabble
- Swimming and Table Tennis
Professor Egho James
MD/CEO, Monstina Enterprises
Alams Close, Effurun, Warri, Delta State
Mr Ojiangbe Kingsley
Living Christ Mission
#4, Upper Iweka, Benin, Benin City, Edo state