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CV hunters

IIs there something like the perfect CV? Though it may sound like an epigram, the perfect CV is the one that you do not need. Jobs should come to you, not the other way round. Headhunters should be after your hide to put it up as a trophy of a person they have placed.

Every now and then you hear stories of hundreds of CVs of people in a particular company — Satyam, say, or Wipro — floating around in the marketplace. That’s normally gross exaggeration. The sensible people just pass the word that they are looking out — and wait. If you are half as good as you think you are, you’ll get a call very soon.

Of course, this assumes you are well networked. Otherwise, like whispering round robin games that were the staple of mixed gender parties, things can lock up at a particular point in the chain.

Imagine a girl cooing “I love you” in your ear. What do you, in turn, whisper to the next guy; all messages are supposed to be high fidelity. (It does get a bit complicated if the person on your other side is a guy.)

Getting back to the CVs — where no new employer is going to say “I love you” — the opposite argument is that if you sit back and do nothing, you will probably stay hungry. And what of the people just joining the rat race? They can’t expect to be well known. Aren’t CVs mandatory for them?

Yes. And that’s where websites like Linkedin come in. If the world knows you are searching for a job, your market value comes down. But if your professional profile is posted on Linkedin, you can always pretend that it’s been there for years. You are on a job hunt without being on a job hunt.

“These sites are extremely useful because employers approach you,” says Mumbai-based HR consultant D. Singh. “You don’t approach anybody. Never ever make the mistake of putting your CV in circulation.”

If you visit Amazon.com, you will find dozens of books on writing CVs — Readymade CV’s: Winning CVs for Every Type of Job; Ultimate CV; Brilliant CV; You’re Hired! CV; Why You? CV Messages to Win Jobs… They forgot to tell these folks that the CV is as dead as the dinosaur. You have to produce a bio-data — if only for the company’s records — after you snag a job. But that’s a factual affair.

The CV has mutated into a personal profile — whether on Linkedin, Viadeo or XING — or in meatspace. And if CV writing is dead, profile writing is the new, new thing. The early birds — Linkedin was founded in 2003 — are already on the job. Check out Linkedin Makeover: Professional Secrets to a Powerful Linkedin Profile. “I have written hundreds of Linkedin profiles,” says author Donna Serdula. If you want variety, you could try I’m on Linkedin — Now What??? or Windmill Networking: Understanding, Leveraging & Maximising Linkedin.

Windmill Networking is an excellent piece of jargon. And the experts at Linkedin are clear that jargon is very avoidable. The top jargon on Linkedin (see box) is quite reminiscent of B-school lingo. Avoid such clichιs like the plague.

Is the CV really dead? Singh doesn’t agree entirely. “As long as there is a downside to being on sites such as Linkedin, people will ask for CVs,” he says. “This is more so as many employers are still quite Net-illiterate.”

But the elaborate CV that went into pages and pages is dead. What is coming into fashion is your own website — a CV on the Net as it were. Join Linkedin and every other such site. Put up some basic details and a link to your own site. That way you have total control over what you say. And when you don’t need to have a detailed profile, just yank your site off the Net. “The next stage is a CV on demand on your mobile,” says Singh. “But nobody has developed a successful model for that as yet.”

DONE TO DEATH

The most overused professional buzz-phrases of 2010

Dynamic

Innovative

Extensive experience

 Team player

Motivated

Proactive

Proven track record

Value add

Skill set

Out-of-the-box

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