As a director, your CV needs to be far more focused and compelling than the applications for entry or junior-level employees. Other managers and leaders will be scrutinising everything from your formatting skills to your experience with precision. After all, while any poor hiring decision can be costly, the stakes are even higher for senior employees.
When hiring managers are looking for senior-level leadership positions like Director of a financial company, every detail on a CV counts. As the saying goes: a great CV won’t guarantee you a job, but it should improve your chances of an interview.
Here at Jobfitts, we have years of experience working with senior level employees and companies in search of leadership talent. Here’s our guidance for writing a successful director’s CV.
Step 1: Create a Relevant, Leadership-Focused CV
All CVs must be tailored to the specific role and company you’re applying for. Successful people know that if they want to stand out, they need to prove that they did their research, and show that they can link their value to the goals of the business.
A director’s CV must be specially refined to highlight the most important points about your history, academic achievements, and experiences. For instance, while your personal summary as a junior employee might list their education in the form of certifications and degrees, a director will also describe the things they learned in their previous senior positions. For example, “My last financial director career taught me how to use record-keeping software, and delegate tasks more efficiently to other team members.”
Look at the job description for your target Director position, and highlight any key competencies, experiences or skills a hiring manager will be looking for. As you write your CV and cover letter, focus on making those key characteristics shine through. You can even mimic some of the languages that the organisation used to create a sense of resonance with the person who reads your CV.
Step 2: Provide Evidence and Facts
When hiring managers are browsing through director CVs, they’re not just looking for skills and potential; they’re searching for someone who can deliver genuine results. After all, as a director, you’ll have a significant impact on the way the business grows and evolves. You’ll need your CV to show your potential employer that you have what it takes to accomplish the goals that matter most to the company.
In the financial services and banking sector, a great way to give credibility to your statements are through figures, facts, and statistics. When you’re describing the things that you were responsible for in previous positions, pull attention to things like:
- Specific statistics: Did you increase revenue? Improve the adoption of new initiatives? Help with ROI on profit-building campaigns? Exactly how valuable was your work? g., “My commitment to driving efficiency in my team lead to a revenue increase of 16%.”
- People you were responsible for: Describe the size of the team that you lead and how your interactions with those people affected your skills. E.g. “Leading a team of 12 people helped me to improve my time management, and delegation skills.”
- Reviews from clients and other executives: Talk about what your previous employer noticed most about your work. E.g. “The clients I was responsible for in my last director position commended my attention-to-detail, and my manager frequently commented on my commitment.”
3. Get to the Point
Details are essential in an interview-winning Director’s CV, but it’s crucial to make sure that you include the right information. The hiring manager or recruiting company responsible for dealing with your CV will have various applications to sort through, so they’ll appreciate a CV that gets straight to the point.
Your executive resume needs a consistent message running throughout the document that highlights the specialities and talents you bring to the table. For instance, if you’re particularly good at cutting costs as a regional director, highlight that in the details of your previous work experience, personal summary, and achievements.
If you need to, you can even include a “core skills” section to highlight some of your critical competencies in bullet points.
As you’re refining your CV, remember not to include:
- Irrelevant details about your hobbies and personality – unless your employer asks for this information.
- Your age and date of birth – no employer is permitted to ask for these details in the first place according to anti-discrimination laws.
- Headshots: Although certain companies appreciate a headshot as part of a CV, most won’t need a picture to make a hiring decision.
4. Show Off Your Personal Brand
Finally, include details that will define and showcase your personal leadership brand, and the things you can do for the organisation in question.
Your director’s CV is your chance to show that you’re the best candidate for the role. There are plenty of managers out there that can build a top-performing sales team, but if your CV can show that you also share the same values as your target employer and deliver measurable results in the areas that they’re struggling with, you’re more likely to get an interview.
With a list of the critical competencies that you found in the job description, work on making your personal leadership brand shine through in your CV. You can place a statement at the top of your CV that highlight the main qualities that make you right for the position or include this information in a custom cover letter.
For instance, perhaps one of the things that makes you a great director is your ability to coach and motivate others. Rather than just saying you’re a confident and accessible leader, tell your employer what this means for their business. E.g., a leader that can teach others will improve productivity in the workforce, prevent teaching methods from becoming outdated, and deliver more engaged staff.
Job Fitts Consultants are a specialist provider of professional Recruitment Services for the Financial Services sector and related suppliers in Australia. Since 2003 we have recruited and placed a breadth of operational roles at all levels from; HR, Accounting, Marketing and Customer Service/Frontline.