CV guru Bill Faust kicks off Lincoln employability week


The Enterprise and Employability week takes place between November 16-22. | Picture: Samantha Fisher

Bill Faust, author of bestselling book “Pitch yourself”, gave up a six-figure salary to travel around the world and talk to people about his ideas. He believes that in order to get anywhere in life, you have to be able to market yourself well.

Faust’s speech at the University of Lincoln on Monday, November 16th, was a success. From Marmite and first dates, shark attacks and Jimmy Choos, the lecture certainly was thoroughly interesting. But if you missed it, here are some of his top tips:

Understanding your CV

For every job, you will need to change between 80 and 90% of your CV. In order to do this, you need to construct the longest, reverse-chronological story of your life and achievements. This is then used as a bank for you to take relevant information from for each job you apply for.

Your CV is there to get the employer to want you, so write it with their perspective in mind, and using everyday language, not long, complicated words.

If you’re applying for a job through a recruiting agency, target your CV to suit them. Then when they offer you an interview, you should amend it to suit the employer.

For every achievement in your CV, you need to break it down into four points: objective, analysis, action, and results. You will be employed because of the way you think, and one good way to demonstrate this is by the way you write the analysis: your thoughts on how you did what you did.

The average time any employer looks at one CV for the first time is between 20 and 30 seconds, and they look for a reason to throw it away. This is why you need to grab a potential employer’s attention as soon as you can.

Understanding the interview

Applying for a job is a little like going on a first date; you have to excite the other person about you and about your future together. It isn’t just about listing what you’ve done, but expanding on this to make it interesting.

The most important question that you will be asked in any interview is “What can you offer me?”, so be prepared.

Just because you’ve achieved something in the past, it doesn’t mean you did it well, or that you can do it again. Even your degree itself, identify what that university has given you and explain it to the employer.

If you’re applying for a job that, for example, is asking for one year’s work experience, and you don’t have this, there is a way to get round it. You need to prove that you have the relevant competencies that you would have gained from doing this work experience.

Understanding yourself

Getting a job is all about self-marketing. People say business is all about creating demand, but it’s not. Business is about understanding the market, the employer and yourself. Employers want to know how you think, and how this differentiates you from everyone else that wants the job.

You need to understand your own competencies. These are your underlying traits that make you better within a role.

You cannot reach your goals unless you understand yourself, because it is yourself that you need to market to others.

These are Faust’s top tips on how to get far in your career. Market yourself to the needs of your employer and you should get as far as you want to go.

2 Responses to CV guru Bill Faust kicks off Lincoln employability week

  1. I highly recommend this book. Bill Faust certainly knows what he is talking about. I just wish I had seen him talk live.

  2. Antonio Melillo says:

    This is really helpful. I was just wonderin if you had any other stories from employability week? i missed most of the workshops unfortunately. Thanks