Building a professional profile on paper is an art form. There are unspoken physiological terminologies that give a deeper insight into your profession that is beyond your responsibilities. By using the right descriptive words to highlight your expertise, you are speaking into the subconsciousness of the reader in very short sentences.
For example: using words like “Implement, Design, Oversee, Lead, Conceptualise, Manage,” shows that you have a sense of leadership and creativity, and to do this successfully there are several soft skills you possess.
Using words like “diligently, analytically, carefully, etc” shows the “How”, after you have described what you do, using some of the words mentioned focuses on the methodology you use to execute your tasks and the thought-process behind it.
As an entry level candidate, it can be hard to quantify your limited experience, especially when you’ve just graduated. You may struggle with titles, writing a professional bio, and generally having a clear view of what your career path will look like.
Firstly, don’t stress about it! Focus on your aspirations rather than exactly where you are currently.
Even though you’re not there yet, let your audience know what your plans are. Employers need to know what your aspirations are and what you are currently doing to actualise it. That shows our potential employer that you are a thought-driven professional with clear direction.
Now once you have conceptualised this, you have to be careful with the words you use. I have seen a lot of professionals, especially on LinkedIn use the word ‘enthusiast’ to describe themselves. For example: “I am a graduate of Biochemistry and a HR Enthusiast,” or “I’m a graduate of Economics and a Supply Chain Enthusiast,” etc. But exactly what does the word enthusiast mean?
The dictionary terminology says an enthusiast is “a person who is very interested in a particular activity or subject.”
In combining the two you’re saying to your audience that you have a keen interest in this discipline but there’s nothing that says you’re taking actionable steps to make this interest a career.
There’s a distinctive difference between being interested and pursuing; just like there’s a difference between “I’m going to register for that course” and “I have a few papers left until I’m a certified professional!”
As an entry level professional, what distinctively separates you from your peers is demonstrating your ability to not just think ahead, but plan for the future. So instead of using “enthusiast” replace it with the word “Aspiring”.
To aspire in dictionary terminology means “directing one’s hopes or ambitions towards becoming a specific type of person.
Stating that you are an ‘Aspiring Finance Professional’ automatically tells your audience that though you are a fresh graduate with no experience at the moment, you are in the process of developing the skills required to thrive in that specialism.
It’s extremely important in a competitive market place that you convey your experience the best way that you can regardless of the level of your exposure to the corporate world. Your CV is a document that speaks for you in rooms where you are not present, to defend your academic choices, career choices, and future aspirations. There will not be an opportunity to discuss these further if your CV is not engaging enough to initiate that conversation.
So be intentional about the steps you make. You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression