In this blog, you will learn about CVs, what they are, what they contain, and six tips on how important they are to you!
Learn about CVs 📚
CVs are critical components of your application as you attempt to land an interview.
What does CV stand for?
A CV (or curriculum vitae) is a marketing tool that you present to prospective employers in order for them to consider you for a current or future opportunity, program or position.
What is a CV?
A CV is more formal than a resume and is more common in Australia. It should be no more than two pages for job seekers with limited experience and no more than four pages for those with more experience.
What does it include?
The CV is a document that includes some basic personal information as well as a summary of your education, qualifications, work experience, interests, and accomplishments.
Some professional CV writers recommend including a career objectives or goals section, but whether that is appropriate depends on where you are in your career or what type of role you are applying for.
The ultimate marketing advertisement – Imagine this…
Think of the CV like it’s a brochure. The brochure will list the benefits of purchasing or using a particular service. The product they are leasing and service they are getting or potentially getting is…you!
Your CV is your first point of contact with potential employers and is essential for getting your ‘foot in the door’ for an interview.
Design it well and make it easy to read…
Everything is about visual appeal! Remember, this is a marketing document for you. It might get you a foot in the door… with that in mind… we need to make it appealing to read. How? Simple but effective designs! Simple fonts with lots of white space! You can make this a hard copy (which you will most likely need for the online systems and initial application) or electronic and/or digitally accessible.
The consequences of designing your CV without using a template… A poorly executed and presented CV that fails to convey relevant information, makes it difficult to read and may limit your ability to secure an interview.
Ask yourself – Would you give yourself a position?
Consider your CV from the perspective of an employer when developing and writing it. Would you stand out from the crowd (i.e. other candidates), and would the manager want to speak with you based on the information in your CV?
The more the BETTER!
When you’re just starting out in your career, getting an interview is critical because it allows you to expand on your CV and sell yourself despite your lack of experience. When it comes to applying for jobs, don’t do it one at a time or, worse, only apply for one position. Complete multiple applications to increase your chances and gain extra practice.
After delivering the documents and application – Deliver YOU and deliver you well!
If you are invited for an interview, you are then in a fantastic position to explain and expand on what is in your CV and use your interpersonal skills to help secure the position. Don’t slow down here. Make sure you know what it takes to deliver yourself well at the interview.
Structure and Types of CVs 📝
Different CV Formats
There are numerous CV formats that you should be familiar with in order to create and design the most purposeful CV possible. As an undergraduate, new graduate, or experienced nurse, your CV and application will be slightly different.
Without Experience CV
The purpose of this CV is to demonstrate the candidate’s ability and potential. What they offer in particular may differ from that of other candidates. Typically, they have little or no experience (less than two years) and may still be in school. As a result, it is necessary to focus on inherent abilities, knowledge, academic achievements, qualifications, acquired responsibilities, volunteer work, travel/trips, languages, and so on. There may be no Job / Work History section.
A professional CV is written for people who have at least 5 years of experience and are in intermediate positions with significant responsibility levels. It focuses on the achieved objectives, problem-solving, applied abilities, promotion, and development of the career to date. In this case, studies may be less important than gained experience.
Executive CVs are used by people in high-level positions. It focuses on the goals achieved as a senior manager or champion of some area with significant leadership and problem-solving experience, which may include project development, use of abilities, and team motivation. To summarise, they should emphasise their competencies and how they apply them.
The most commonly used CV format does not always make obtaining an interview easier.
The academic education and experience are presented in inverse chronological order, beginning with the most recent or most recent work, then the previous ones, and finally the studies.
The disadvantages of this format are that it can display any periods of inactivity (months, years) and/or frequent changes in work. This frequently leads to the candidate filling these spaces with irrelevant information for the position.
It emphasises a person’s advancement in the workplace: promotion and increased responsibilities are reflected, which has the disadvantage of revealing if a person, despite being very effective and satisfied with their role, has not ascended or taken on more responsibilities.
When to use a chronological resume: If you have extensive professional experience, have not been out of work for an extended period of time, have not changed jobs frequently, and are looking for work in the same industry.
Advantages: The format is traditional, and most hiring managers regard it as simple to read and understand. It demonstrates job security. It reflects your increased responsibilities and/or advancement. It emphasises the type of position you held and the companies for which you worked. It describes your responsibilities and accomplishments.
Disadvantages: It highlights any changes in the company or “job-hopping.” It allows the reader to either work out or concentrate on the age of the candidates. It could indicate a lack of recycling or updating training. It reflects any inconsistencies in work activity.
The Functional CV avoids the disadvantages of the Chronological CV type and allows for the display of abilities and achievements obtained, even if the dates in the work experience are not continuous, aiding in the concealment of periods of inactivity or successive similar jobs without promotion. When you want to highlight your professional career or enter a completely different activity, the type of company and/or studies are irrelevant but your abilities, capacities, and type of work are.
If you want to highlight your abilities over the course of your work experience, you can use the Functional CV. If you want to return to the job market after a long absence. If there are numerous periods of unemployment between jobs. If you’ve changed jobs frequently. If you want to work in a completely different industry. If you believe your age will be a barrier (“very young, very old”). If you have worked as a freelancer or self-employed person. If you are a recent graduate with no prior experience.
Advantages It demonstrates the individual’s abilities and strengths. It enables you to highlight the skills and knowledge that are most relevant to the position you seek. It eliminates the repetition of roles in similar positions. Flexibility in presenting/displaying your person and achievements. Useful in new technologies, such as the Internet, telecommunications, media, and public relations. You can discuss abilities, interests, and motivations that you do not always use in your work but could.
It does not highlight the names of the companies for which you have worked. The length of time spent in each position is unimportant. It restricts the job description and responsibilities.
CV formats that combine the formats (chronological and functional CVs). The functional format of the CV is followed by the chronological format. The combined format is more difficult to write and more complex, but it has the advantage of emphasising the candidates’ experience and abilities for the new position they are applying for, as well as reflecting their experience and training in a dynamic format.
An advantage includes it clearly demonstrates that you know what you want to do and that you have the skills required for the position. It includes the section “Achieved Goals.” It allows for greater flexibility and creativity in displaying abilities. It aids in obtaining a specific position.
Disadvantages You’ll need a different summary for each job you apply for. It takes a long time. It removes information about your skills and experience that you may prefer to keep private if you are applying for multiple positions at the same company.
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We are back for the year – 2022!
I had a good couple of weeks off over Christmas and New Year which was absolutely fantastic!
I started off the year with releasing another newsletter! That was issue 4 and 5 is only just around the corner! I have been loving the feedback and sharing it all with you! Want to join the rest of us? CLICK HERE to sign up to my NEWSLETTER.
This week, in my stories there has been a lot of chat about GOALS!
I love reflecting and looking at where I want to develop myself personally and professionally as the new year commences.
At the end of last year, upon reflection, I realised that I set out to achieve a lot last year….and…I did it ALL! I was stoked with achieving it all!
The toughest thing I did was remain dedicated. After many years, I found the help I needed for my ADHD. I did this as I started noticing an effect on the people around me, at work and in my relationship with my wife, that was no longer functional and ok for them…or me.
This presented other personal and wellbeing challenges which has increased the load and learning curve with the management…..however this is the main area I am working so hard on in 2022. I want to be a better me! AND I WILL BE!
The constant grind working on my mental health and wellbeing is something I will always be working on, its something to just constantly learn about and improve on yourself and try and enjoy each and every moment!
Anyway, enough about my reflection….
Today I wanted to chat to you all about Goals. Setting our goals is important. It is important to have something to work towards.
When it comes to the goals, how do we know if we have achieved a goal? Do you monitor your goals and their progression? Do you set a clear path for their execution?
All something to consider…
When I look at what I want to do and setting goals to get it done, I use a few things that may help you with yours.
These can be broken down to simply – Break it down, Identify needs and wants, sort out the why, assign priorities, consider the resources, set the goals, schedule and plan.
This is just a break down of what I do.
Let’s have a look together.
Break it all down
I break the areas of my life down to ensure I am working on, planning and progressing in all areas of my life equally or to the degree I want to be with that area.
For example: I have these areas I look at
- Wife – Aims
- Mental health and Wellbeing
- Physical Health – Including Fitness (training) & Nutrition
- Computers & Technology
- Nursing Clinical
- Nursing Education
- Aquatic Rescue
- Pre hospital care
- Aussie Nurse Educator
- Life Saving Education
- Rory Tanner
These are my main core areas of my life I constantly work on.
Identify your NEEDS & WANTS
Identifying between a need and a want can sometimes be difficult. The way I think about it is a NEED is something that the area requires to function, or to maintain its ability to do its main role and is directly involved in the want.
A WANT on the other hand is something that will help you but isn’t needed right now.
As a new graduate nurse, I needed to do lots of things and I had many goals. You NEED to develop your skills as an RN and you would also WANT to develop these skills. This is consistent with each other and fuels and motivates you forward.
New graduate nurses also NEED to be able to complete all the shifts required of them including night shifts. You maybe don’t WANT to do night shift though.
There is an issue with the WHY (why are you here doing this?) and this also presents another NEED on top of the other…. – I now need to learn how to perform at my best on night shift and deal with the thought, ‘I don’t want to’.
You need to work on the WHY!
For me, I couldn’t do nights! My physical and mental health suffers way too much! Hence why you don’t find me in the ED ?
Sort out your WHY
Why do we do what we do? Powerful question! For me? Well, because I like it and it literally floats my boat! I do it because I am passionate and interested, which builds my motivation to do it!
If you do not have a solid WHY, you will probably fall away and not achieve that goal…
So WHY do you NEED to do this and all these night shifts? Here is a couple for you.
- Because you committed to becoming a Nurse. Nurses do shift work. Full stop. It is part of your training and development as a Nurse and person.
- It is extremely important to your clinical area, other colleagues, the hospital, health services and your patient. All of which you as a nurse, work for and serve professionally! Remember you chose this!
- It is vital for you to develop the skills to manage these shifts, yourself, others and your patients overnight. This is a hard learning curve. When to eat, when to sleep, when and what to do. You have a lot of support when you are junior! Reach out and use that support! You are not weak, dumb or behind! You are learning and you will get there!
Did we say you have to do it forever? No! I didn’t. Just sort out your short term and long term WHY!
You need to know how much priority (a rough percentage) you want to place on each area and sub-area of your life. This will change based on the year, the stage of life and more! There is no right answer!
The key is to assign and stick to it!
There was a time, actually two that I can remember, where I was struggling. It was all because the PRIORITY was not set or it was wrong!
In my first year of nursing as a new graduate, I was doing a lot of things and the areas of my life suffered due to a shift in priority. I went way up into the work area and left too much of the personal area behind…not good.
Have this clear from the start and keep it in sight!
Consider the Resources
What do you have available to help you?
This will depend on the life area and overall goal. These can be internal or external resources. Identify the things that will help you achieve each specific goal.
The common items for me: ADHD, mindset, productivity skills, social connections, network, macbook pro, ipad and iphone
Set the Goal
To set your actual goal, you should consider using a structure like SMART GOALS.
SMART goals stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound.
Defining these parameters as they relate to your goal helps ensure that your objectives are attainable within a certain time frame. This approach eliminates the grey areas and guesswork, sets a clear timeline, and makes it easier to track progress and identify missed milestones.
SMART Breakdown – to help you set your goals
First step to be effective is being specific.
Three quick and easy questions here for you to ask in relation to the goal you want to set
- What needs to be accomplished you’re done?
- Who is ultimately responsible for it and who else is involved in the process?
- What steps need to be taken to achieve the goal?
- Where is it located?
- Which resources or limits are involved for me?
Quantifying your goals (that is, making sure they’re measurable), makes it easier to track progress and know when you’ve reached the finish line.
Questions to get you started include:
- How much and how many?
- How do I know if I’ve reached my goal?
- What is my indicator of progress?
Achievable, attainable and realistic to be successful. The goal should stretch your abilities but still remain in reach and possible. If you are setting an achievable goal, you may be able to identify previously overlooked opportunities or resources that can bring you closer faster or a more efficiently.
Goal answers questions such as these:
- How can I get the goal accomplished?
- How realistic is the goal, based on other constraints such as resources?
- Do I have the resources and capabilities to achieve this goal?
- If not, what is missing and what do I need. I.e. what’s the prior goal.
- Have others done successfully before?
The WHY! Ensure it matters to you!
We all need support and assistance however it’s about remaining in control and being consistent with you. So the plans need to drive everyone forward but ultimately leaving you still responsible for achieving your own goals.
Ask questions such as:
- Does this goal seem worthwhile?
- Is it the right time to send this as it go?
- Does the goal match our other efforts and needs?
- Am I the right person to achieve?
- Is it appropriate and applicable in my current social economic environment?
Every goal needs a target date so there is a deadline for you to work towards. Also setting something as a mini goal to keep you motivated. This section of the process is to help and prevent every day tasks from taking over to ensure you can still reach your goals.
A timer appropriate goal answers these questions:
- What is the time frame to achieve this goal?
- Does the school have a deadline?
- When did I want to or need to achieve this goal?
Schedule & Plan it out
This will be specific to you!
I am heavily reliant on technology to achieve my goals and this is a main resource in the overall process. Scheduling and planning is so vital to ensure you are being intentional with your time and being as productive as you can be, while leaving time for the other things in life.
I use a combination of the calendar app on MacOS and iOS connected to my google and iCloud calendars to schedule my life, year, months, weeks and days.
I use DayOne to journal my thoughts and monitor progress of the schedule and planning on execution.
I use Notion to do absolutely everything else!
Do what you need to do to become accountable. Some people are internally or intrinsically motivated. Others are external or extrinsic in the nature of their motivation.
I spent a considerable amount of time being an endurance athlete and during this time we were asked to identify how we were motivated. This was very powerful to performance.
See it’s not the performance that is the issue, you already want to do that. What about the training involved? All the hurdles and challenges. Identifying how you are motivated! Don’t get me wrong, you are not one or the other. It is like learning styles and the way you learn. We are a combination of them all, however most people find one area helps and drives them more than another.
I am internally motivated to achieve. All I have to do, is complete this process and commit that I want to do it and I am there getting it done. For example, I immensely enjoy the challenge of learning something new and then applying the skills and seeing them in action.
On the other hand, I had friends who were athletes and they were quite external in the way they spiked and fuelled their motivation. An example includes, focussing more on the competitive or performance outcome of what is happening. These people may be lifted by social media, winning the event or being seen by others as ‘good’.
I was always taught, as an athlete, that being more intrinsically motivated is better for in both the short and long term. Even if you are predominantly externally motivated, thats ok, you just need to identify what works for you and then do it.
Be accountable and work it out.
What is the benefit to you and how can you apply this in your life or into the future?
We need to know how it will benefit us! This ties in with the WHY and the motivation. Review each stage and each goal to ensure you are on track and working towards or are achieving that goal.
What area did we improve and what skills did we learn and / or develop?
How does this help us in the future?
Well, I know that was a tad long but….goals are important and this is how I sit down and consider my situation and what goals I want to achieve.
Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed the read!
Now, go write those GOALS if you haven’t already ?