Do you suddenly find yourself frantically updating your CV, hours before you decide to apply somewhere? Have silly mistakes and typos embarrassed you in the past? Do you spend an enormous amount of time racking your brain, trying to remember your recent accomplishments?
Keeping such situations in mind, it is a good practice to keep the CV updated.
But we all know our lives are busy. It is difficult to keep things that way.
But it is not a very difficult task to keep a rough track record of your professional activities, so when the time comes to update and re-tailor your CV, you exactly know what you need to add.
How does one make the tracking process an easy process?
Firstly, you need to find a convenient mode of documentation:
- One of the best, and the easiest way to keep a rough track is the good old notebook or diary. Scribble away from time to time what you want to add in your CV the next time you want to update it.
- Of course, you can also make use of technology. A draft of an email where you add notes about the updates, or an app on your mobile phone which helps you maintain a list, a computer document, among other things are some “online” ways to you can keep a rough track in.
- A very convenient option is to keep a “rough” version of your CV, where you enter details as they happen, without worrying about the neatness or format of the document.
Next, you must know what all you must keep a track of. What should you note down in your diary/rough document?
This can depend on your field of work. But generally, the following activities should be tracked and noted:
Skills: Notes about seminars and workshops attended, new skills acquired obviously would help you sharpen the hard skills section of your CV.
Awards/Certificates/Praises: An obvious thing you’d want to add. The praises can be helpful to hone your “soft-skills” section. (For example, when someone calls you a quick decision-maker; the “quick decision-making” can be considered a soft-skill.)
Important projects and tasks, and how you accomplished them: Notes about these can help you answer certain generic interview questions.
Remarkable interactions with co-workers: Notes about these can help you add some soft-skills on your CV.
When you have a list, a rough draft, the only task you would have is actually organise and accommodate the new information in your CV. Imagine how quick and easy the process can become!
As mentioned above, keeping a rough track this way can also help you answer some generic interview questions. Since you have been keeping a track on regular basis, everything would be fresh in your mind. As a result, when asked about something, you wouldn’t have to spend too much time thinking what to say, and moreover, you would be able to articulate everything in a much better way.
Wouldn’t keeping a track help you answer the following questions much more confidently?:
- “What is your greatest strength?”
- “Describe how you overcame a difficult project or situation at work.”
- “Do you work well with other people? Can you give me an example?”
- And most importantly, “can you walk me through your CV?”
Keeping a rough track of your activities is thus an under-rated way of tailoring an impeccable CV.