8. About me section

Finally, on the front page, you have an opportunity to show qualities in your character which you have no other opportunity to show, and that’s in your ‘about me’ section. It may not suit everyone to do this – it depends a lot on your personality – but for lots of candidates, putting something interesting about yourself can be the final decision-point in getting an interview from a paper sift.

If you dismiss yourself in 5 words (reading, gardening, yoga, feng shui and travel), so will the hiring manager. Think about it – what kind of person does the interviewer want to meet? What will make you a dead-cert on the interview list, simply because they want to meet you?

Here are some examples of how this can work well:

  • A retail manager described how she got a friend to finish a marathon by singing to him and getting him to dance the last mile.
  • A chemist said she enjoys having animated debates with friends over excellent restaurant dinners.
  • A would-be fashion buyer interspersed every other interest she listed with: ‘and shopping’.
  • A senior secretary got her interview for the role of personal secretary to the MD of a multinational based almost entirely on this section on her CV. She said: ‘I buy modern art that nobody else understands – even though they are fascinated by it – and I have an uncanny knack of winning when my friends and I go to the races’. She was the top candidate from the second she sent in her CV because they thought she would be an ideal fit with the team. She wasn’t the highest qualified.

What this section does is reach out to the selector and say: ‘I may not be the best qualified, but I am the person you’d most like to meet’.