Generic buzzword profiles are a load of BS

reading a bad cv, photo from canva

4 of 5 Things Most Recruiters Won’t Tell You

Most CVs nowadays have a profile at the top. It is usually 3 or so sentences about what makes you great and relevant for the role. It is always going to be read by the recruiter unlike something on page 2. So it is your main chance to shine.

If you only take one thing away from this article:

DO NOT start your CV with a buzzword stuffed, nonsensical profile.

It will get you no-where. You wouldn’t believe how many people do this and it is frankly ridiculous. This type of profile is usually written in the third person. I have no idea why people insist on doing this. Perhaps to sound more professional?

You can tell for yourself, which of these two profiles is more appealing?

An enthusiastic self-starter with acute leadership & communication skills. Proven academic and curricular achievements, and possesses the right technical and soft skills required to propel the organisation to achieving its goals and objectives.

Or this one?

I’m an entry-level digital marketer with a 2:1 degree in marketing and an exceptional work ethic. Recently, I volunteered as a fundraiser for Breast Cancer Awareness finding sponsorships on the Internet through Twitter and Facebook. I also built my own website and blog that you can find here:

I’m guessing you can tell the difference?

A tip – the first one could be written about anyone. There are no specific examples of education, no story telling, and it is devoid of all personality.

And just to prove my point that extremely experienced marketing people get it wrong too – read this:

A commercially focused digital marketing professional with a deep knowledge and passion for measurable communication and new technologies in online media. Advanced experience growing brand presence and revenue online through developing strategy and managing digital tools including search engine marketing, website development and optimisation, eCRM, ePR and Social Media. Customer centric with a passion for creating excellent user experiences. Successful career progression achieved within both start-up and large global matrix organisations.    

This profile would win you top marks in buzzword bingo!

Don’t be fooled into thinking that big words, lots of superlatives and industry lingo make for a great profile. They really don’t. They are utter BS.

When I’m hiring I like to see a profile written in the first person ( I am, I did, My, I have etc). It shows your personality and is less likely to be dry and boring. It’s your chance to tell your story.

The profile is your chance to explain what makes you great and what makes you right for this role as succinctly as possible.

About post author

Hello. My name is Lucy Smith. I recently quit my full-time Marketing Director role at a tech start-up in London, (after 13 years hard graft getting there), in favour of starting up on my own. Why? The journey from graduating with a 2:1 in Media and Cultural Studies to Marketing Director hasn't all been plain sailing, but is has been challenging and tremendous fun. A career path that I heartily recommend to anyone who will listen. Digital Marketing For Graduates is my brain-child. I'd like to give something back, as well as have the experience of starting my own business. I will give it my all. Provide and source the very best information I can, but I know I can't do it all alone. For Digital Marketing For Grads to evolve I will need some help. Please get in touch if you'd like to be part of the idea.
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