Why I Always Look at the Personal Section of a CV First

on 08 March 2013

I’ve been a member of a few cricket clubs in my time. At each one, there has been one or two people who do all the organising.

They are invariably under appreciated. They are not always ‘one of the lads’. In fact, they are sometimes seen as a bit of an annoyance to ‘the lads’, with their constant badgering for help and organising rotas to run the bar.

One of those types has just donated £1,000 to our cricket club. Without his willingness to umpire every week, ‘the lads’ wouldn’t be able to relax and watch the game on a sunny day.

I am one of those people. At a previous cricket club, having taken some qualifications, I became the club coach. I gave some technical coaching when asked. Mainly, I organised. For example, I decreed that only those that arrived to help set up the nets would be allowed to bat. Certain first team players (used to turning up after nets were set up and leaving before they had to be put away) didn’t like me very much. I never really felt ‘one of the lads’.

The first team got promoted in each of the three seasons in which I was club coach. Not one single person made a connection between my coaching and the success on the pitch. At the end of each season, there was an annual dinner and prize giving. One of the prizes was ‘Clubman of the Year’, an award given to the person who has done most to help the club. Who do you think won this award in each of those promotion seasons?

That’s right. The guy who ran the bar.

I came to a very important conclusion during those three years. It doesn’t matter. You simply cannot do these things for the recognition, because it rarely comes. Once you have made that leap, you relax, and stop feeling so taken for granted. The whole experience becomes enjoyable again.

‘The lads’ have a tendency to let others do the work, and complain if it’s not done the way they want. I strongly suspect that if any of my old colleagues at that club read this, they would have no memory of this period, they probably wouldn’t even recognise what I have described.

Look around you. Who quietly gets on with trying to make things better, not expecting praise? Who runs the various clubs and societies, the Scout groups, the rugby clubs. Let’s give them a big ‘thank you’!

We’re always looking for good people at Ovation. When I read a cv, I want someone who will get things done, not ‘one of the ‘lads’. I want someone who gets off their backside and tries to make things better, not someone who waits for others to act. It’s great to have examples of this in the workplace, but such a trait tends to show itself in all walks of life, not just at work.

There is an old adage in recruitment – recruit based on attitude, because you can always train the skill. And that’s why I always look at the ‘Personal Interests’ section of a cv first.

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