In sales it is not the features that are purchased, it
is the benefits of the product or service offered. In job searching,, you
might be an expert in your profession - the best there is, but that is not
why you are employed. It is because your skills (features) can make a
contribution, you achieve (benefit) things for your employer. It is
the "benefits" that is the real reason you are employed. When thinking
about your achievements at work and for writing your Curriculum Vitae (CV), it is necessary
to ask yourself a question 'Who benefited from my work and how'?
Thereafter, when talking about yourself, or when writing your
CV career or objective statement
can become what is known as benefit laden.
Exercise 1 - What Have You
WHAT HAVE YOU DONE ?
* to increase your company profits / revenues
* to demonstrate you are a high performer
* to satisfy your customer / clients
* to improve quality or service to reduce costs
* to increase quality
* that you are proud of
* to increase efficiency
HAVE YOU ?
* trained/supervised others
* received awards/decorations
* instituted new procedures
* reduced inventory levels
* identified problems
* installed new systems
* increased safety
* decreased scrap
* reduced absenteeism
ASK YOURSELF QUESTIONS SUCH AS:
* What were the results ?
* What did this mean ?
* What could the company do now ?
* So what ?
* For what ?
* By how much ?
* How many ?
* Which ones ?
* Why were you chosen ?
Employers are more interested in what you can achieve for them, than the
skills you possess. The interviewer will try to establish what benefits
you will bring to the company, and where your benefits might be greater
than those of other candidates.
Your CV should be presented as a
benefits package to the your prospective employer, a useful tip before the
interview is to practice putting together useful phrases starting with:-
Which means that......................?
Which resulted in.......................?
The benefit was........................ ?
We gained because.....................?
The advantage was.....................?
TO EMPHASIZE YOUR ACHIEVEMENTS, SUCCESSES QUANTIFY THE FACTS WHERE YOU CAN
AND USE POSITIVE ACTION VERBS WHERE YOU CAN.
S.T.A.R. represents 3 ways to begin to
demonstrate your achievements, or in other words how
your key skills are applied in work. S
describes the "Situation" T = the "Task" as does the A, the "Action"
expressing specific activities or or what you do hands-on. R is the "Result"
describing the impact or consequence of the tasks or actions taken. The
results are your 'value' and will be expected by hiring managers to select candidates. Your STAR examples should
illustrate your depth of knowledge, level of ability and value for each
Situation / Task
While in the Consumer Division as
Product Director, I was
assigned to a team of product developers on a high risk product.
I performed market research and carried out customer surveys that identified historical
market trends for annual
projections and successfully rewrote the proposals.
This eliminated redundancies, increased efficiencies and
provided and opportunity for success.
Situation / Task:
I was responsible implementing a research project for a
new product development group.
I developed a team of researchers, conducted research, wrote survey
reports, and chaired focus groups.
All goals and requirements established by the customer
were met and product was abandoned saving the company
I was responsible for overseeing the development of Desktop Services for
high value customer
I defined product services and a rollout strategy for the
operations, developed a business plan and successfully sourced funding.
Product was implemented on time and within budget, this also provided
complete customer satisfaction and repeat business.
The results are your 'value' and will be expected to be seen on
your CV by hiring managers. Your STAR examples should illustrate your depth of knowledge, level of ability and value for
each skill. Identify the time frame (begin - end dates) for
each STAR example and monetary or time savings to the company if you
When you are finished, go back to each job and think about what you might
have done above and beyond the call of duty. What did you contribute to
each of your jobs?
> Did you exceed sales quotas
> Did you save the company money?
> Did you solve a problem?
> Did you develop a new procedure?
> Did you promote a new product?
> Did you expand business or attract / retain customers?
> Did you improve the company's image or build new relationships?
> Did you improve the quality of a product?
> Did you do something that made the company more competitive?
Write down any achievements that show potential employers what you have
done in the past, which translates into what you might be able to do for
them. Quantify whenever possible. Numbers are always impressive. Remember,
you are trying to motivate the potential employer to buy . . . you !
Convince your reader that you will be able to generate a significant
return on their investment in you. You are selling yourself so stress the
benefit and contribution you can make to your prospective employer.
Power words |
Product Director CV