If you want to get ahead in life, you have to be familiar with yourself. This is also true when it comes to CV writing and job search.
No matter what you read, how many interviews you’ve watched, how many different CV templates you’ve used – you will always be yourself. You are unique because you are different! You must face it, embrace it, and own it! That is the only way you can find out what interests you and how you can utilize your personality in building a successful career.
And to really understand what’s going on and to really own it, you need to learn everything there is about you. How you can do that?
You can do it by asking questions! A whole lot of them. And you need to have a wide audience so you can gather a lot of feedback.
To learn more about yourself, go to your parents, grandparents, friends, relatives, colleagues, managers, former professors.
Adjust the questions to the person you’re asking, of course!
This might sound funny at first and completely unrelated to your career path, but if you do not have well-developed self-awareness, you will find yourself in big trouble. Sooner or later, you will leave your job or be very unhappy with it and soldier through…Knowing yourself is a foundation needed for making decisions you will not question or regret later.
They can help you a lot in getting the first step in CV writing and job search done.
Go to your family and relatives to hear about your childhood. Try to find how you reacted to certain situations. Learn about how your habits developed and changed. See if you can get valuable information that you could reflect on and utilize going forward.
Maybe you will find out that you once had an interest in a field that you are now completely disconnected from. If you are going through an existential crisis and you are not sure what to do next, this might be a nice way of broadening your horizons. You never know what useful information others can provide so don’t hold back. Ask your questions and see how the conversation develops.
The answers they provide might help you go get an idea of how you developed over time, and this is very important when it comes to planning your future, CV writing, and job search in general.
To get feedback about your performance and personality at work, go to former colleagues, and even managers if you have that option. See if they remember how you handled stressful situations, unpleasant customers, and long hours. Ask them to list a few words that come to mind when they hear your name.
This will, of course, depend on several factors: how long you have worked with them, did you stay in touch, how was your relationship while you were collaborating. It would be extremely unusual if you called someone with whom you haven’t spoken in months or years.
Other people who can help
If you are still in contact with your teachers and professors, you can also go to them. Drop them a line and see if they even remember you. If they do, that already says a lot. If they don’t, gently remind them who you are and see if they could meet you. This can help you get insight into your studying routines, presentation styles, and ways of communicating with peers and people older than you.
This option is probably a long shot, but there are some people who are in touch with their professors and teachers so why not ask them as well! CV writing and job search is a complex business and you should use all the help you can get. That is why, in order to get this first step done, you are collecting all the information you can.
Take everything with a grain of salt
What is important is that you take everything with a grain of salt. Yes, they are people who interact with you and who experience you in ways you can not experience yourself. And, yes, they could be more objective when sharing opinions about you than you are when you think about yourself. However, keep in mind they are all humans and each of them has their own point of view. In your uniqueness, you play different roles so it is only natural you will hear different opinions.
As a result, you are like no one else and you should act in line with that. You are unique just like everyone else. There is no template nor a form that can represent you better than yourself.
If you need help with putting together a CV, feel free to get in touch. You can also send your CV for a free review. If you’re good on that front and would like to learn more about professional development, job search, or any other career-related topic, reading our Blog could be very beneficial so check it out here.