When Creative CV Tips Go Wrong

  • Career
    When Creative CV Tips Go Wrong

Source: www.loveshopshare.com/desk-mess/

What? You mean all those tips and tricks for making my CV stand out are going to blow up in my face?… Well, not exactly. While it’s true that we need to work harder than ever to make our resumes stand out from the rest, there are some recommendations that call for a bit of restraint. Those recommendations? We’ve debunked them.

Fun fonts…
And no, not just Comic Sans. While it’s only natural to think that an interesting font or colour (even ‘just for headings!’), will set your CV apart from the yawn-inducing Arials and Helveticas in the stack, type that’s even a smidge too fussy to read will likely land you in the too-hard pile.

Unnecessary visuals…
Unless you’ve been instructed to include visuals in your application or they’re relevant to your role (graphic designers, what up), don’t include any design elements that might impede or distract the reader. This includes, but isn’t limited to, a giant greyscale filigree background image that rendered all the words unreadable. Yes, that landed on my desk. No, I’m not over it yet.

Knock knock / Who’s there? / Your future favourite employee, that’s who… 
While there’s always urban legends and viral sensations about jokey job applications that land the role, there’s a million more comedic geniuses that tank in HR inboxes every day. Depending on the industry, it’s usually fine to let a little personal flair shine through in your CV. But layers upon layers of humour in your cover letter or CV? Just looks like a ploy to distract from lack of experience or suitability for the role.

Cryptic buzzwords…
Don’t try and dazzle the reader with new or innovative ways to describe an otherwise regular role. They don’t typically have the time or patience to decode flowery descriptions or wade through a cacophony of career buzzwords, and eyes will roll the second a writer refers to themselves as a ‘word stylist’.

Referring to yourself in third person…
While it may sound sophisticated, professional or mysterious, referring to yourself in third person makes your cover letter sound:
a) creepy
b) clunky
c) like it was written by a robot
d) all of the above
The cover letter is prime real estate for you to reveal a little personality and engage with the reader - now’s the time to let your “I” and “My” flag fly.


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