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A Guide To USA Style CV Making: Top Dos And Don’ts

Fatma Gdoura expert of “CV/Resume Building” workshop during Skills21 third bootcamp.
Fatma Gdoura expert of “CV/Resume Building” workshop during Skills21 third bootcamp
Not knowing the norms got you here? 🥺

1- DOs:

  • Include your name, address (if relevant), phone number (preferably cell), and email address in your heading.
  • For your work experience, use a reverse chronological order. Make sure to mention the position title, name of the company, dates of employment (months and years), and description.
  • In the education section, use the reverse chronological order as well. Include your degree, major, school, and year of graduation. If your GPA is above 3.0, you can mention it. Your performance will be known as high.
  • Mention your skills and abilities, both soft and hard.
  • If you got any certificates or awards such as winning essay competitions, scholarships, honors, and professional affiliations, mention them as well.
  • When applying for a job, make sure your CV is 1-page max.
  • When applying for academic positions, your CV can be 2–3 pages long.
  • Use action verbs such as accelerate, construct, explain, measure… Here is a list of 195 verbs to get you started.
  • Use quantitative values: Show the impact of what you did. Make it real and measurable. A good example to follow: Elevated the average customer rating from 4.0 to 4.5 after instituting a new customer service training program.

⚡ GOLDEN BONUS TIP ⚡: Use keywords and verbs that is relevant to the job description you are applying for, that will make your CV stand out from others.

2- DON’Ts:

  • Using the 1st person: Your verbs should be written in past or present tense depending on the time of the experience without including the 1st person as a subject.
  • Posting a photo: It is prohibited to attach photos to avoid discrimination and unconscious bias.
  • Using different kinds of fonts or irregular spaces: Your resume will look messy and unorganized.
  • Writing broad and non-specific descriptions: For example, increased organization for the company.
  • Using the same verb over and over again. Instead, use verbs from the list that we shared with you earlier.
  • Having a fit-all resume: You need to make different versions of your resume depending on the function, the position, and the company.
  • Treating your CV as an autobiography: Only relevant information need to be mentioned. In other words, you don’t have to tell it all; just highlight what is important for the occupation.
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