Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Top 10 Biggest CV Mistakes

It's very easy to make mistakes on your CV and extremely difficult to repair the damage after an employer has already seen it. It is imperative that you prevent these mistakes whether you are writing your first CV or revising it for a new job search. The 10 biggest CV mistakes and how to avoid them are as follows:

1.     Do Not Head Your CV ‘Curriculum Vitae’.

It should be quite obvious what your CV is without giving it a title; if it’s not then I would suggest that you have a problem. Start with your full name, address, telephone number(s) and email address. Very often your CV will get printed off and stapled together, so don’t put your contact details at the bottom of the last page. The fact that the page looks like a CV will do the rest.

2.     Making Your CV Too Long or Too Short

There are no real rules regarding CV length, however that doesn’t mean you should start sending out 5 page CV’s. In general you should limit yourself to a maximum of two or three pages depending on experience. At the same time don’t cut the meat out of your CV by sticking to one page.

3.     Punctuation and Spelling Mistakes

Your CV needs to be grammatically perfect. If it isn’t, employers and recruiters will read between the lines and draw unfavourable conclusions about you, like “This person clearly doesn’t care” or “This person can’t spell”.

4.     Job History That Doesn’t Match The Job Your Applying For

All employers want to see a CV specifically for them; they expect you to clearly show how and why you fit the position in a specific organisation. Your key achievements should match many of the job requirements in the position you’re applying for.

5.     Highlighting Tasks Instead of Achievements

It is very easy to note tasks after tasks you completed whilst in a job but what employers are really looking for is your achievements, they want to see achievement after achievement, make your achievements stand out first and then put in the tasks you also completed.

6.     Poor Layout

If you’re CV has a poor layout it could be put straight in the bin. Some CV’s are scanned in less than 3 seconds, so it needs to be pleasing to the eye and easy to read. Don’t cram in too much information in a small font, your font should be no smaller than 10 but also make sure it isn’t too spaced out. Finally make sure your most recent job is first and the job before that second and so on.

7.     An Outdated CV Will Make You Look Obsolete

Your CV should be updated for every position you apply for. Be sure to update your skills and work history; make sure your skills set is current and tailor your CV to the job you’re applying for.

8.     Some Things Are Best Left Off Your CV

Don’t list your hobbies, no one cares what your hobbies are, your CV is not your Facebook profile. Don’t put anything on your CV that’s irrelevant to your job. If it’s not relevant then it’s a waste of space and a waste of time.

9.     Don’t Write Your CV In The First Or Third Person

It’s fine to write in first person in your opening statement, but the rest of your resume should be in bullet points. Never write in the third person as everyone knows you’re the one writing the CV.

10.  Professional Email Account

Don’t include email addresses or websites that have the potential to reveal controversial or inappropriate personal information, Make a new one. It takes minutes and it’s free.


Written by Liam Oakes

Liam is the Candidate Manager at Aaron Wallis and has been with the company for 2 years after having a career with the RAF; Liam has helped hundreds of Sales Professionals secure a new Sales role and ensures that Aaron Wallis runs smoothly.


Friday, 18 January 2013

How to Conduct a Brilliant Interview in 60 Minutes or Less

There’s a formula for conducting a great interviews and it’s called planning!  Here’s a quick video which explains how you can make a great impression yet still be able to conduct first interviews in less than an hour
  • 15 Minutes: Small talk and ‘chemistry’, Set the agenda, The company, role and opportunity (see How Not to Lose the Best Candidates)
  • 30 minutes: Competency Interview
  • 5 Minutes: Q&A
  • 5 Minutes: Where we go from here. Close.
  • 5 Minutes: Notes and prepare for the next candidate
I personally sit facing a clock to make sure that I keep on track.  However, I do know of interviewers that have a desk clock in the middle of an interview desk and another, the SD of a major courier firm, who sets an alarm for 45 minutes and then on the beep states there’s ten minutes remaining!

How to Use Twitter in Sales

How to Use Twitter in Sales

How to Not Lose the Best Candidates

How to Not Lose the Best Candidates

Questions Employers are Not Allowed to Ask

Questions Employers are Not Allowed to Ask | Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment offering top sales jobs:

Thursday, 17 January 2013


There is a huge number of things that your 2013 sales strategy could and should contain. A good sales strategy and plan should target and address all the minute challenges and opportunities your business is facing. It should be focused on unique business distinctions; however…there are three things that should be top of your list to complete your 2013 sales strategy: i) A Learning Plan, ii) Content Marketing and iii) Social Selling.

A Learning Plan – despite not taking everything in whilst at school, I have always been a big fan of learning and problem solving, I see something that interests me, and I want to learn more. This year I am committing to a learning plan; I have a list of things that I want to learn to help increase my sales.

We’re wired to learn; we can’t help but learn, but we can choose what we learn and depending on what you choose it can make a huge difference to your sales. The companies that have been benefiting for the past few years from; social media, content marketing, blogging, etc. are in most case's learners; they build a learning plan into their sales strategy. Recognize the development of a trend or a gap in your knowledge and commit to increasing your knowledge in that space.

If your 2013 sales strategy lacks a learning plan, you will find yourself behind the curve. Find a specific topic or topics you and your organization want to become the expert in during 2013.

Content Marketing – every sales and marketing organization's 2013 strategy needs to contain a content driven lead generation campaign. It must have a way to attract clients with detailed content.

Content Marketing is used by the foremost sales people who have the greatest command of information and insight. Long before social media, content marketing, or the Internet, the most successful sales people carried the best and most compelling insights and information. Content marketing is perfectly built to propel those with insight and knowledge. If your sales organization isn’t very good but has more relevant insight and information, there is no better way to differentiate your organization than Content Marketing.

Social Selling – Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google Plus are changing the selling game; it has created a new approach for sales people to connect and sell to customers and clients. Social Media has given sales people the insight and connectivity to their target market in ways they couldn’t do in times gone by. Ignoring Social Selling and not proactively integrating it into your sales strategy via training and tools is failing your sales organization.

If your 2013 plan doesn’t have these three things, then it could cost you not only in 2013 but also in future years.

Written by Liam Oakes

Liam is the Candidate Manager at Aaron Wallis and has been with the company for 2 years after having a career with the RAF; Liam has helped hundreds of Sales Professionals secure a new Sales role and ensures that Aaron Wallis runs smoothly.

LinkedIn - http://www.linkedin.com/pub/liam-oakes/4b/536/403

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

How to WoW at an Interview

How to WoW at an Interview

Your foot is in the door, interest has been gained, you have secured a potential sales meeting. This sales meeting is highly personal due to the fact that you are attempting to sell YOU!

From the perspective of the employer this is a firm process after scrutinising several CV’s and finally coming up with a productive shortlist. There are qualities within the job specification that are deemed essential but also elements that would be preferable.

All employers would love to see the ‘picture perfect’ CV on paper but this is rarely the case and as such various competencies and qualities have to be reviewed and so this leads us to the first interview.
Depending on the organisation the meeting can vary and will cover elements like basic details, competency questions, market specific information, aptitude etc. One thing that is certain is the fact that this is the first opportunity for you to have face to face time with the potential employer.

We have covered several aspects within a short video to cover all areas and give you the best possible chance of obtaining a return visit. It is essential that you prepare and by watching this video you will gain an insight into basic checklists which make best practice permanent practice not only for the interview process but also for any potential sales meetings. The video covering just a few minutes will provide you with valuable material to add to your already successful sales capability, you can find it via this link http://www.aaronwallis.co.uk/wow_at_first_interview.php


Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Happy New Year – When Does it End?

As a sales person you almost feel obligated to start each call with a ‘How are you doing?'  or ‘Did you have a good weekend?’ type statement but ‘New Year’ is a real peculiarity.  When do you stop saying ‘Happy New Year?’ and ‘Did you have a good Christmas break?’.  Is it the 4th January, 7th, 15th, 31st?!
I took the decision that the new business year started with a vengeance on Monday 7th January as most people had returned to business and most people don’t have any annual leave booked now for some months.  Everyone whom I know has kind of ‘blown off the Christmas cobwebs’ and wants to get fully back into 'sales mode' to ensure a great start to 2013.  However, is there a possibility that the ‘How was the festive break?’ opener could return your psyche back to the times of indulgence, mince pies and weird drinks that you’d never entertain at any point other time than the last two weeks of December?
I’m deliberately trying not to reminisce back to those festive times, so I apologise to anyone whom I call that I’m not opening with the ‘How was the festive break?’ statement.  I’m consciously trying to motor into 2013 and steadily going through the gears with the aim to reach full steam on say Thursday 10th.  So I’m not being rude by not opening with the ‘Happy New Year’ statement, I just feel that it’s time to say adios to 2012 and HEEELLOOOO to 2013! 

So for the last time, Happy New Year!  May I wish everyone a happy, healthy, successful and prosperous 2013.