Using the same generic CV for all your job applications is like tossing a message in a bottle into the ocean.
Of course, you need to have a CV. However, many people fail to realise that its primary purpose is not to get a job. Its main purpose is to get a face-to-face meeting. It is to be intriguing enough to start a conversation, to get an interview. And there is an art in writing it. Well done, it not only gets you an interview, but also cues questions for the interviewer to ask that build to a picture of how hiring you can solve the hirer’s problems.
However, people who succeed in getting the job they really want don’t just send out unsolicited CVs. They arrange a warm introduction from someone in their network to a person at the company where they really want to work. They know where they want to work – their target industry, the companies they admire, the roles they are suited for. So, they can quickly fill out the Ideal Work Preferences form.
Secondly, they can tell flash non-fiction stories – ‘PARs’ that outline the Problem, Actions and Results of their relevant accomplishments. These are not boasts, but tell a brief and powerful story that demonstrates what they get done when at work. Typically of 225 words, clear and concise, using strong action verbs a PAR hits the hot spots that promise “pain relief” for the company and the boss.
In the telling, it communicates what “makes them tick”, their aspirations that fit well with the organisation. It highlights what they have accomplished – expanding sales, increasing profitability, improving efficiency, establishing a platform for the future – in a way that they know how to repeat their past successes.