26 Mar How to communicate your greatest achievements in a CV, LinkedIn Profile or interview?
Your CV and LinkedIn profile are there to communicate and demonstrate your expertise and experience as well as the value you can bring to a business. Yet, companies don’t just want to know what do did in your previous roles, they want to know what you actually achieved.
By stating your achievements, you are basically demonstrating your skills and experience in action.
However, one of the biggest mistakes that people make when communicating their achievements is to list personal ones e.g. ‘won employee of the month’.
Whilst you may be proud, personal achievements usually don’t have much value to a potential new employer.
Ideally you want your achievements to have a ‘wow’ factor so that the hiring manager thinks, ‘Amazing! If they managed to achieve that for their previous company, then I would love them to be able to do that for mine too.’
So how should you list your achievements for each role?
The easiest way is to tell a story consisting of 4 parts – Problem, Solution, Impact and Quantify.
Create a problem statement that describes the initial situation that you were faced with. This sets the stage and places the achievement in context.
The company was spending too much money on freighting their products from their warehouse to their stores both nationally and internationally and they needed to reduce the costs.
How did you fix the problem? State the action you took or solution you implemented that addressed the issue. This demonstrates the application of your skills and expertise.
I analysed, compared and tracked shipping costs and then renegotiated terms and rates with existing suppliers as well as removed ones that were charging too much. Additionally, I was able to utilise my existing knowledge of logistics to minimise costs by consolidating shipments and better utilising container space.
What was the result of your actions and what impact did it have on the business? This is where you demonstrate the value you bring to an organisation in terms of your capabilities and experience.
By organising the relevant containers, it allowed for the product to hit stores quicker and was a cheaper method. As a result of my efforts, I managed to save the company $85k per year.
A company’s key aim is to achieve and remain profitable. If your achievements either saved them money or made them money, then those are valuable ones definitely worth noting. Maybe you improved business efficiency which reduced the time it took people to do a task.
Ideally, you want to be able to quantify your achievement, (e.g. dollars, time, percentages) as it makes the achievement more tangible to the reader.
Now, not every achievement can be quantified but if you can weave your achievement into a story and use the 4-step method above, you should be easily able to communicate the value you bring to an organisation and give your CV, LinkedIn and Interview skills a seriously competitive edge!