How can I make my CV the best CV?
August 30, 2011 1:23 PM   Subscribe

After 10 years as a freelancer/sole proprietor, I've been recruited for a position as Creative Director of a company in the financial services sector. They've requested a CV. I don't have one and never really have. Please recommend best practices, templates, resources, anything to help make a great CV for a CD.

Any help is much appreciated, especially anything that specifically pertains to CVs for Creative Directors or similar positions. I'd like to hear mostly about what to do, but anything important about what not to do would be helpful, as well.
posted by FeralHat to Work & Money (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Do you have access to someone who can design a CV for you (you simply provide your info and they can format it accordingly)? People who are in that business usually are good at how to creatively take your info and emphasize the most relevant info.
posted by foxhat10 at 1:53 PM on August 30, 2011

I work in creative/IT in financial services; I occasionally interview other creatives. I assume you have a portfolio? It would be ok and even desirable in terms of cutting down on redundancy of content if your CV made reference to your portfolio. Presumably the CV is the ticket that gets you an interview, and it contains the info that passes (or fails) the initial evaluation: degrees, years of experience, etc. The interview is where you really pass the personality/work process/"does this person fit in here?" test. Make sure your CV makes prominent mention of a portfolio that contains examples of your creative work.
posted by ImproviseOrDie at 4:45 PM on August 30, 2011

I'd expect anyone entertaining the idea of becoming a creative director to have the wherewithal to design their own resume. So I'm assuming that's your plan, rather than hiring it out. You're going to have some trouble finding reference examples but simply consider your audience and what they need to know about you and work from there. This is just another design problem. Make it clean and easy to skim. If they've already recruited you, then the resume can only hurt you at this point. Don't get fancy with it.

If you're looking for what not to do, a few things come to mind. Don't focus so much on your education (at this point in your career) and for sure don't list your high school. Don't use brightly colored paper, glitter or more than two typefaces. Avoid script. Don't include a photograph.

A two-page document is acceptable, if necessary. Have someone else edit your finished design for typographical errors. Don't count on your own eye to catch everything.
posted by Jeff Howard at 9:04 PM on August 30, 2011

I always recommend Richard Lathrop's Don't Use a Resume to people, especially if their circumstances are a little offbeat. You'll find lots of useful information about how to position yourself on paper and about formatting. (N.B.: I have no financial or other interest in the book. I've used it myself and so have some friends.)
posted by bryon at 8:10 AM on August 31, 2011 [1 favorite]

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