I was reading the business news on my phone at 10pm one night when an email came through from a manager of a national media outlet. He had been trying to write a professional CV and had just hit the wall with frustration, so emailed me for help. As it was urgent, I emailed back and we booked an appointment for the next day.
He showed me the CV which he and his wife, also a senior professional in the media world, had been working on. It was professionally workmanlike. This client had exceptional commercial value to offer and it simply hadn’t been captured on paper.
In short, he had no unique, compelling professional identity. He was just awesome to interview: his passion, professionalism and competencies came spilling out with each question. I captured them. Just as importantly, I captured his unique way of expressing his professional competencies.
Armed with that, I went to work. I used my knowledge of his sector and the transitions it was going through. I used the quantifiable achievements, I had elicited from him. I captured his passion for the industry. And I wrapped it up into a compelling package with my own professional writing skills.
He was so delighted, he asked me to write a CV aiming at a totally different industry: one he had always dreamed of attacking, but one he had never had the tools to confidently pursue. Again, I used his professional passion and quantifiable achievements, but that wasn’t enough.
I took the initiative to outline how his fresh thinking could add value and I developed for him four key pillars of potential in the industry. Potential that would deliver his perspective employer exceptional worth. Would a cookie-cutter, form-filling service have given him this professional value?