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From Germany to Sydney: Why Hermann chose to study business abroad

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Hermann is in his final year studying at the University of Applied Sciences in Ulm, Germany. He chose to study Business abroad in Australia for a semester at Western Sydney University. This is his story.

Why study abroad in Australia?

“I really wanted to study business abroad, so I started doing some research on universities overseas. Personally, I didn’t want to stay in Europe and so I decided on somewhere different – Australia. Being in the city was also a big thing for me. So I was looking at studying in either Melbourne or Sydney. I came across Western Sydney University and I really liked the look of it. It also offered some good study scholarships as well, so that was a bonus.

“I used an organisation called GOstralia! that helps students travel to Australia and New Zealand to study. They were great, and they made the application process pretty straightforward. I sent them all the application forms and then they went through them to check that everything was right. Then they send everything to the university and afterwards, I got my letter of acceptance!

hermann and friends“Western Sydney University contacted me directly via email, then I was able to say yes or no. It was pretty simple. Then I just had to pay the tuition fees and choose my units. Afterwards, I got support from Isis Kowaliauskas and Rohan McCarthy-Gill in the International Department at the university. They provided video conferences explaining everything about the university – things to know, what stuff to bring with us from home and so on.

“I chose to study business, which is taught at the Parramatta Campus. This is where I took most of my classes – modules such as ‘Creating Change and Innovation’, ‘Business, Society and Policy’ and ‘Psychology: Human Behaviour’. These units are not necessarily related to my field of study back home in Germany, where I’m an engineering student. But I wanted to try out something new, and I thought technology and business were some interesting subjects.”

Why study business at WSU?

“In terms of the course, there was a wide selection of units to choose from. I wanted to use my semester overseas to do something new, working in areas that I’m not that confident in and will be useful in the future. This was the main reason I chose to study business abroad. I’m really interested in the field of entrepreneurship so I did ‘Business, Society and Policy’ and ‘Creating Change and Innovation’.

“The courses I chose were really good and really interesting. They were delivered through a mixture of lectures and seminars and tutorials. But besides that, there were a lot of assignments such as writing essays, group reports, quizzes, doing presentations, etc. You actually have to do a lot of work throughout the semester, which we don’t necessarily do in Germany. It was actually quite good because it encouraged you to learn. In Germany, you just have one exam at the end of the semester, and everything depends on that single exam.

“The teaching staff at the university were very good, but it was different compared to the bigger universities in Germany. At home, you can sit in a lecture theatre with 300 students and no interaction with the professor. So you feel more afraid to ask questions because of the group size. When I went to study business abroad at Western Sydney, it was a really nice experience, similar to being back in school with smaller groups of 30 or 40 people. The professors were also different – in Germany, a lot of professors at universities focus on doing research, so their teaching styles are not very good. But in Australia, you could really see that the professors cared for you and they wanted you to learn – a slightly more personal touch.”

Find out more about Hermann’s time at WSU and travels to Southeast Asia.

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Ligia’s study abroad experience in Australia

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Ligia is a marketing professional working in Sydney. She came to Australia from Brazil to study her MBA at Western Sydney University. This is her study abroad experience.

Do you want to study abroad in Australia? Ligia has put herself through plenty of challenges as an international student and emerged from them all triumphantly. We caught up with her to chat about her time as an international student in Australia, and the events in her life that got her there.

Putting family first

The first thing Ligia wanted to talk about in our interview was her family and what they mean to her, which speaks volumes about the kind of person she is.

“I think firstly I have to mention that I have a “special” brother. His name is Vitor and he was born with cerebral palsy. I am just starting off with this because this makes my family’s dynamic slightly different from everyone else’s. I’m very attached to my family. It may sound cliché, but everything that I do is based on what’s better for them, not just for me.”

family graduation photo
Family graduation photo

Throughout our interview, these remarks hold special significance as it becomes clear just how much Ligia missed being close to family and to Brazil. Illustrating just how determined and resilient she is. Ligia has been familiar with the world of business from an early age as her dad works as a customer success manager for an insurance company in Brazil. She quickly realised that she needed to do something that would earn her enough money to support her family. But she also wanted a good job, a career and to uphold her commitment to them.

“I chose to do my bachelors in Brazil when I was 17 and straight out of school. So I started studying at a great private college called ESPM, which translates as ‘Superior School of Advertising and Marketing’. I did an undergraduate course in Advertising and Marketing, which is consistently ranked as one of the best in Brazil. I guess everything started there in terms of my career and my relationship with business and marketing.”

Find out more about Ligia’s MBA at Western Sydney University.

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Ligia’s MBA in Australia – Western Sydney University

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Ligia graduated with an MBA from Western Sydney University in 2018. She now works in Sydney as a Marketing Manager. This is her story.

Why an MBA in Australia?

I studied a degree in Communications, Advertising and Marketing in Brazil, but what I really wanted to do was study English in Australia. So I did, and after four months in Australia, I started studying for a diploma in Business. Then I realised that if I wanted to stay in Australia, I had to enrol on a postgraduate course in order to qualify for a visa. So, I decided to just go for it and apply for an MBA.

I had wanted to do a Masters anyway because it was the next level for me after my degree in Brazil, so it seemed like the next step. I also wanted to stay in Australia because I knew it would offer me a lot of opportunities in terms of working and career progression.

Check out our reasons why you should complete an MBA programme.

Why Western Sydney University?

I made contact with Isis Kowaliauskas – a fellow Brazilian who works for the international department at the university. She has now become a colleague, but at the time we met through a Facebook post in one of the Brazilian communities. After looking at her Facebook post about Western Sydney, I knew I wanted to go there and see what it was like. In the beginning, it was just what I needed because I didn’t know anybody else. She was so sweet and helpful. She introduced me to the whole university and the whole course and everything. And then I said, yes, that’s where I want to do my masters.

I went through all the modules and did all the research, and then I went to the campus and could immediately see myself studying there. It was like falling in love. I know that sounds romantic, but that’s what happened: it felt right. I think it was the biggest factor for me because I’m very into feelings – they are important when making choices.

Scholarships

Then there were the practical reasons. I’d say that Western Sydney University was the most cost-effective out of Sydney’s biggest unis (UTS, Sydney University, the University of New South Wales and Western Sydney). Among these, in terms of price, it was the best option. Western Sydney University also offers scholarships for international students, as well as their public scholarships. I was nervous but it was like any university thing, I needed to just go for it. So I applied to try and be the lucky one, and I was!

Click here for our top 5 government-funded scholarships for international students.

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Top 10 Most Popular Countries for International Students 2020

So you want to go to university, but you’re not sure where. Don’t worry, we’ve got you. You’ll be pleased to know that living and learning in a different country can bring SO many benefits, personal and professional. According to Statista, these are the top study destinations for international students in 2020. Are any of these on your list?

1. United States – 1,075,496 International Students

From New York to LA, Florida to Seattle, America is one of the most expansive and diverse countries in the entire world. It is home to some of the very best universities. Though the cost of studying and living in America can be tear-jerkingly high, the freedom to explore and the sheer quality of the courses is surely worth it.

2. United Kingdom – 551,495 International Students

The United Kingdom is known for having some of the best universities in the world and boasts a strong employability rate. Though tuition fees are high, the courses are only three years (as opposed to four like the USA). The UK has a fantastically rich history and is one of the most diverse countries in the whole of the world. Plus, it is the home of the English language, giving you the perfect opportunity to hone your language skills.

3. Canada – 503,270 International Students

In Canada, you can polish up your English skills as well as your French, as these are the two leading languages. Canada is often voted as one of the top countries for the quality of life and happiness of its citizens and it also has a low crime rate. It proudly boasts some of the very best Universities in the world.

4. Australia – 463,643 International Students

Australia is always one of the top destinations for International Students. It has low living and tuition costs, and Australian universities often offer scholarships that help to lower prices even further. They also allow students to work up to 40 hours a week with their student visas. Australia has beautiful landscapes, great weather, lovely beaches and big party culture. It is always very popular with students.

5. France – 358,000 International Students

France is one of those countries where you can go skiing in the morning, and then have a vineyard tour at sunset. It is so vast and has so many fantastic regions, each with its own identity and culture. The education costs are very reasonable compared to other top destinations, and it is the home of some of the world’s largest corporate brands.

6. Russia – 353,331 International Students

Russia values education very highly, and around 54% of its population have or are studying degrees. The country is so large that there is so much to explore. One half of Russia is very European, whilst the other has strong Asian influences. Russia is a very modern country, however, its values are traditional and so this mix is otherworldly. It is becoming more and more popular over the years and is definitely one to consider.

7. Germany – 302,157 International Students

Germany has a wide selection of highly ranked Universities and promises strong employability. German universities offer a lot of degrees at a low, or sometimes no, cost! It has a long and rich cultural heritage, a fantastic art scene and unmatched nightlife.

8. Japan – 228,403 International Students

Japan has always been a popular destination with students. It is often seen as the epicentre of technological innovation, and so is popular with students interested in science and technology. Japan has one of the lowest crime rates in the world and the health service is very inexpensive, and so it is pretty safe there. The food is amazing, the culture is so interesting, and the landscape is endless.

9. Spain – 125,675 International Students

Spain is becoming an increasingly popular destination for international students to choose to study in for many reasons. One is that the education system is very well-organised and straightforward. Another is that the cost of living in Spain is cheaper than most of its European counterparts. A key reason is also the beautiful year-round weather, which goes perfectly with the gorgeous Spanish beaches. Spain has a lot of rich history to explore, and a huge party culture so there is something there for everyone!

10. Netherlands – 94,236 International Students

Studying in the Netherlands is fast becoming a popular choice with students from all over the world. It boasts a very high standard of education and a lot of degrees are taught 100% in English, making it very popular with students from the UK and USA. The Netherlands is a very safe place to live and learn, with a big international student community and good employability rates.

 

5 More Must-have Apps for International Students

Gone are the days of turning up to class with a notepad and a pen. Thanks to modern technology, our studying habits are becoming far quicker and easier. Studying apps are a fantastic way to make writing, reading, referencing and notetaking that little bit easier. Here are our 5 must-have apps for international students.

Grammarly

Grammarly corrects your grammar in real-time and offers you better words to make your writing even stronger. You can download it onto your phone, tablet, and laptop! A must-have for all students, whether English is your first language or you’re still learning. Find out more.

Cite This For Me

Use Cite This For Me (RefMe) to get the perfect book citations every time. Either download the app on your phone to scan a book’s barcode or use their web version to search for your book in their online library. Choose between MLA, APA, Harvard, Chicago, or whatever format your school uses. Find out more.

myHomework Student Planner

myHomework is a digital student planner that lets you track your classes, homework, tests and projects so you never forget an assignment again. You can download their free version, which allows you to track your classes and assignments, receive reminders and use homework widgets. Find out more.

Otter

Otter is a fantastic app that records when someone speaking and converts it into text in real-time. It’s perfect for sitting in class or a lecture theatre if you struggle to take notes quickly. You can simply record the whole class. This is great if the tutor is not speaking in your first language, as you can go back and reread what they have said.

Office Lens

This app from Microsoft takes pictures of documents, whiteboards, blackboards, magazines, receipts, and more and converts them into editable, shareable text. It can read images from an angle and it cleans up glare and shadows too. Very useful for group projects or on-the-go editing. Find out more.

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Critical and original thought…procrastination by another name?

There are many reasons people attend university. To achieve a lifelong career dream. To pursue a financially rewarding career. To pass a few years whilst they work out ‘who they are’. All legitimate reasons, but are they achievable? The outcomes of university may also seem self-explanatory: degree, employment opportunities, networks of colleagues for years to come. Realistically, though, the true benefits of studying are much less tangible. Measuring them can take a little more nuance.

Adam Grant did a TED talk about what he coins ‘originals’. Those individuals who break from convention and try something new. People who say ‘No,’ to traditional routes of learning in favour of breaking their own path. Seeing this video got me to thinking: is university really about the subject you choose to major in? Or is it, in 2019, more about developing relevant original thoughts and ideas to propel you into the unpredictable future?

looking-to-the-future

Original thought is abstract as an idea

Throughout recent years, universities, colleges and schools have all attempted to distil such ideas through classes labelled ‘Critical thinking’ (an old Oxbridge favourite), ‘Reasoning’, or plain old ‘Study skills’.  The aim: to encourage lateral and open dialogue, discussion and dissection of ideas for the promotion of progress. The reality: professors divesting themselves of a range of references to philosophy, scientific studies and psychological theorems to encourage students to reflect on their learning.

Grant, though, looks at the concept in a different manner. He describes one of his most productive and creative students and her exceptional talent… for procrastination. Instead of following protocols – like deadlines for essays – she forged her own way through. And Grant supported her to do so. He was inspired by her gumption and so they entered into a study into procrastination. As a result, they found creativity and procrastination to be inextricably linked and notes, with humour, the limitations of the study as unfortunately the chronic offenders were too lazy to complete the questionnaire! There’s a sweet spot between being lastminute.com and the early bird who catches the worm.

social-media

Procrastination for the win

So perhaps that stereotype of students who leave everything to the last minute (due to too much time on social media) as gamblers is incorrect. Maybe, contrary to long held beliefs, some people really do ‘work better under pressure’ from a deadline. Some of the most famous people in the world admit to it:

  • The Dalai Lama has admitted “Only in the face of a difficult challenge or an urgent deadline would I study and work without laziness”. He argues that he has seen the light now, though, and encourages a life of preparation so that “if you die tonight, you would have no regrets”.
  • Herman Melville (author of Moby Dick) was so awful a procrastinator he was physically chained to his desk in order to finish his magnum opus.
  • Bill Clinton – his aides reported that during his presidency, despite careful planning and plenty of notice on their part, he would often leave drafts/comments to the last moment with Al Gore referring to him as ‘punctually challenged’.

Maybe, rather than being a sign of weakness or disengagement, the lessons learned from having to accelerate uphill towards a deadline actually produces spontaneity and genuine moments of brilliance as Grant suggests.

Elon Musk has said that he has often started a project without any clue as to the likelihood of success. But, he argues, if an idea is important, there’s too much of a risk if you don’t try. That is surely the most valuable lesson any student gains from university: that risks are worth taking, and if you look at things in your own way you may just live to see them pay off.

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Books for Finance Students and Investors Alike

Finance is a constantly developing industry, and one it is ever more crucial to understand thoroughly in this technological age of enlightenment. There are endless fresh approaches to business and fresh opportunities, too. So it is little wonder that degrees in finance-related subjects are some of the most sought after in the world. An attractive proposition, here are some books that illuminate the diverse world of finance – from insurance to banking, real estate to investment. Here are our top books for finance students and investors alike.

The Finance Book: Understand the numbers even if you’re not a finance professional. Si Hussain and Stuart Warner

First, an introductory text designed for people without an in-depth understanding of the industry. This book is written in easily accessible language by a successful CEO (Hussain) and a Chartered Accountant (Warner). The Finance Book encourages you to think like a financier. Of particular interest may be the sections on interpretation of documents and dossiers or strategic theories for robust decisions in business. Other topics covered include pricing and costing, ratios, and debts and profit. Great for new managers, budding entrepreneurs and future finance students, this book is digestible and direct in its content. A must-read, full of insight and time-saving ideas.

Uncommon Sense: The popular misconceptions of business, investing and finance and how to profit by going against the tide. Mark Homer

Entrepreneur and investor, from the early age of 15 Mark Homer has dedicated his career to the pursuit of a financial career. He began by investing and reinvesting in several businesses. Now he’s known for writing a plethora of essential reads for those wishing to invest in the property markets.

This guide, released in 2017, is for all those wanting to know some hard and fast rules for success. A self-confessed ‘spreadsheet geek’, in his wittily titled ‘Uncommon Sense’ Homer outlines some lesser-known ways he has learned to enjoy success. How? By deconstructing the myths of the industry such as ‘Most assets make no money’ or ‘gut feelings’ which should be ignored!

Who is Homer to dictate the rules? A man whose portfolio of the property now ranges into hundreds of assets, and whose ‘algorithm’ when applied accurately can open up opportunities in commercial and residential property alike. He has now reached an audience of tens of thousands. Homer also enjoys the accolade of having written the top 4 books in the UK on property development. It’s a good starting point for those desirous of avoiding pitfalls that have befallen many in recent years hoping to ‘break’ the markets.

Broke Millennial Takes On Investing: A Beginner’s Guide to Levelling-Up Your Money. Erin Lowry

This book does what it says on the tin! It gathers together advice for the current generation of would-be investors to ensure that they make astute decisions when choosing where to place their money. Many questions rest on the lips of young people wanting to access the burgeoning market of finance: when, where and how to invest being just the tip of the iceberg.

From the basics of understanding the lingo to more hands-on guides written in a tongue-in-cheek tone. Opening with an ‘infomercial’ style intro, signed off by Lowry simply as ‘Erin’, there’s no doubt as to why it shot to the top of the bestsellers’ list in the US…the ‘221 pages of fun’ that detail how to avoid being risk-averse in a game that encourages (a certain amount of) risky business. Chapters that are titled as the questions framed by Millenials wanting to invest, Lowry’s answers are drawn from personal experience and hard-learned lessons.

Entertaining and enlightening – read ‘Broke Millenial Takes On Investing’ and if you enjoy it, look up Lowry’s other titles too.

A Random Walk Down Wall Street – The Time Tested Strategy for Successful Investing. Burton G. Malkiel

An oldie but a goodie, you can’t argue with over 1.5 million copies sold. This is no ‘easy reader’, however. Now in its 12th Edition, you may wonder how relevant a text ‘A Random Walk’ could be. Well, the publishers have acknowledged this in the new preface and they suggest the reason for another update is the ever-growing spectrum of tools available to the public and the industry to manage their finances.

Unpicking the financial crises of recent years, and analysing the impacts and uses of developed technologies, this is surprisingly enjoyable to dip into and well-written to ensure secure understanding can be gained. With a title derived from an insult on Wall Street, this text explores intricacies of the financial markets often deemed unfathomable by most aspiring investors. Best enjoyed in stages rather than settling in on a cold winters’ night, Malkiel’s book is essential reading nonetheless.

So those are your starters-for-ten. Enjoy! They’ll become your new best friend, whether you are hoping for a career in finance, studying for a degree or considering an investment of your own.

Enjoyed this article? Check out our other business subject guides.

5 Books All Aspiring Medical Students Should Read

Medical students are the unsung heroes of many healthcare industries around the world. They are fresh eyes and new ideas in an ever-challenging world of medicine. Whether in developing countries or developed, the experiences of these inspirational individuals make for some incredible reading. You may laugh, cry or some combination of the two. But if you want to become a medical professional, here are five top picks to keep you entertained on the journey.

Your Life In My Hands – Rachel Clarke

Formerly a television journalist, Briton Rachel Clarke decided to switch careers aged 29. For many doctors, medicine has been their only career. But for Clarke, she had thought that the experiences she had on the ground as a journalist would make another role pale in comparison. Hours “under fire in Congo’s killing fields”? They’d make medicine seem a walk in the park, right? Wrong. From the start of her engaging and charming book she makes it clear that the real challenges she has faced began in the wards of her training hospital.

Written with inimitable candidness, her honesty jumps off the page. You can’t help but like the narrator, and get drawn in to the story of her journey. From conversations with Prime Ministers about ‘water closets’ to letters to the national press decrying the state of affairs in the NHS that prompted national protests, the links between her current and past careers is undeniable. Perhaps because of this her voice is strong, her passion infectious and her perspective refreshing.

A must-read memoir for those wanting to switch up the monotony of the day job for the challenge of a lifetime: working in medicine.

The Real Doctor Will See You Now – Matt McCarthy

Skipping across the pond, Matt McCarthy‘s first year of med school is underlined with humour from the outset. His first line: “It started with a banana peel.” shows his bemusement at some of the experiences he had when starting out at Columbia University Medical Centre, New York.

He details his supportive relationships with his second-year adviser Baio, the trials and tribulations of night shifts and the fear associated with being ‘on call’. More importantly, though, he talks about what he has learned. Not from his university studies or even his supervisors…from the patients he cares for. Of course, like all of the books recommended here, there is a disclaimer at the start. It’s along the lines that whilst the stories are based upon clinical experience, in order to maintain the integrity of the Hippocratic oath sworn by doctors around the world, details have been changed to anonymise patients’ information. However, there is a reality to the words McCarthy writes, and a tenderness without saccharine sweetness in the manner in which he reveres his charges. In particular, the relationship with Benny who had taken up residence in the hospital waiting for a heart transplant is a pull on the heart-strings.

Definitely worth a read, and good for raising aspirations too – with his humble beginnings Matt is now an associate professor in medicine as well as serving on the Ethics Committee at a top NY hospital.

When Breath Becomes Air – Paul Kalanithi

The topic of this tome – death – is one that makes many uncomfortable. It is, however, a daily colleague of medical staff. As someone with a conflicted relationship with medicine – a tone of disappointment in an absent father who was brilliant as a physician and lacking in consistency as a parent runs throughout this book – Kalanithi introduces himself as someone who wanted to be a writer rather than a doctor from an early age. This would clearly have been a great career path, evidenced by his careful craftsmanship as his challenging yet compassionate tale unfolds.

Paul, it turns out, has passed away and this book is his last foray into the world: an examination of his experiences from both sides of the table as a neurosurgeon and a cancer patient. In his own words, “Life isn’t about avoiding suffering.” By turns delighting and devastating, this tale speaks of humanity and the search for knowledge and joy regardless of an insurmountable illness.

Harsh but true, doctors must grow used to death. What better way to learn than through the words of one who’s experienced both?

This is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor – Adam Kay

Adam Kay is no longer a doctor. After many expensive years of training, and eye-watering experiences to last a lifetime, he hung up his stethoscope in 2010. What remains of his medical career are an assortment of tidbits and anecdotes hastily scribbled down during his time as a Junior Doctor working for the NHS.

A rallying cry for his comrades who were still under the cosh from political attacks, Kay sees himself as a counterbalance to the negativity published about the health service. From the absurd to the sublime, this book beggars belief and will leave you with no questions where the phrase, “It takes all sorts to make the world go round.” comes from.

Witty footnotes and translations of jargon mean that Kay’s book is informative as well as compelling. Contrasts of days filled with filing and night shifts that would make your hair curl (or straight-up fall out) are intertwined. His conclusion? A very heavily worded letter to the Secretary of State for Health that, if you’ve made it thus far, you’ll be vehemently agreeing with and echoing with your own shortly after. See him read from his book here.

Life as a Medical Student: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly: A dose of reality from 30 medical students – Sihame Benmira

Catchy title, but it does exactly what it says on the tin. This book is aimed at the multitude of young people who know they want to become medical doctors but have little understanding of what the training entails. The provenance of many medical tomes is clear through the authors’ prominence – and yet, who better to hear from than those who have walked the path before you?

Benmira successfully tracks the changing emotions and experiences of those pursuing long years of study to achieve that coveted title: Doctor ____. The chapters are organised for first to fifth years, and one for those who are intercalating in a specified area. Sleepless nights and high workloads are common themes, but this is a gem for people requiring a dose of reality…or reassurance that it’s not just you going through it!

How To Perfect your Curriculum Vitae for Employers

What’s the point of a CV? What even is it? The Curriculum Vitae aka resume, bio or generic application. All of these have one purpose: to sell yourself to a potential employer. So what makes you stand out from the monochromatic spiels passing into companies’ hiring departments on a daily basis? A good CV.

General rules (UK specific)

  • Keep it to 2 pages of A4
  • Use a reasonable font size e.g. 12, and a generic typography e.g. Arial or Calibri as well as standard formatting
  • Include key contact details
  • Ensure it covers key skills, education and employment history, and the details of two referees.

making-lists

So those are the basic – then comes the more challenging task. You want to ensure that you have fulfilled the criteria that the job advert displays and you also want to avoid clichés. Follow the advice below for future success.

 

Be creative

Recently on social media, Jamie Laing (founder of Candy Kittens) posted his admiration for a budding intern who had designed her CV to look exactly like a packet of his company’s product. By tailoring her format to the employer she hoped to succeed with she ensured she got noticed – and a boost to her social media following to boot no doubt.

If you are applying to multiple different opportunities, then ensure that you adapt the visuals of your CV to match. A publishing company may be drawn to a design that reads like a story. A restaurateur  may appreciate a menu of your employment history. An online outlet may approve of your web-style design. Whoever your target audience is, in the current market it is likely there will be an overwhelming response for the best positions. So go the extra mile and see where it takes you.

Keep it real

We’ve all heard the urban legends of people who’ve lied on their CV and never been caught. The reality? Rigorous checks take place at most companies and therefore you’re likely to end up with a red face. Instead of claiming to be the UK’s answer to Jeff Bezos, be realistic about your experiences and skills.

Having said that, vocabulary is everything. If you’ve worked in retail, you can write about your ‘customer satisfaction experience’ or ‘product placement expertise’. If you volunteered to support younger undergraduates at your university you can divulge your ‘nurturing management style’. Be honest, but ensure you present your skills in the best light. If in doubt, ask a critical friend to read over it and ensure it makes sense.

Additionally, keep the explanations of your competencies linked to factors that make you employable. Avoid generic comments such as: I’m hardworking, I’m a team player, or I’m a quick learner.

Replace them with a more evidence based approach:

  • During my undergraduate studies, I maintained full time hours in my role in retail as well as volunteering time for younger students.
  • As a team leader at XYZ, I found that a supportive environment ensured better results.
  • Whilst studying for my Masters, I took up playing the clarinet and have already achieved Grade XX.

This way, you’re already proving your worth to the employer, and making them want to meet you in person.

Be specific

Peppering the market with CVs may seem like a winning approach to job seeking. But with the job market being an employers’ playground, generic applications are actually a risky choice. Yes, most of the basic information for roles in the same field may be the same. But job applications that have been amended to include key performance indicators extracted from the advert are more likely to be shortlisted. Even more so if a job description is directly catered to in the layout or content of a CV. Taking the time to let the hirer know you want their job rather than any job is a great way to identify yourself as a candidate worth a second look.

 

Overall, remember:

Be creative

Keep it real

Be specific.

 

Good luck!