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August 26, 2021
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How to interpret a CV or resume

Pavlo Phitidis studied building science, and at the end of his first year, his lecturer insisted that Pavlo spend his holiday working on building sites – digging trenches, mixing cement and laying bricks. Why?

The lecturer explained that he could see Pavlo would not fit into a corporate environment, so would most likely start his own business – and as a business owner you cannot ask employ someone to dig a trench unless you know what it requires. Pavlo believes this remains critical to the recruitment process.

Listen to this podcast from The Money Show where Pavlo unpacks his approach to decoding CVs:

To grow a business beyond yourself, you need to employ a team but securing employees is hard and getting it wrong costs money.

You read the bullet points in a CV and are led to believe that the person who submitted it is a genius. And often we need someone in the role so badly that we wish them to meet the needs of the business, it is a cognitive bias.

In many instances, we want to hire someone in an area that we are not strong, so we are not clear on the specific activities and outcomes they need to deliver on.

So how do we get this right?

First, check for a matching of values and culture, you can teach skills but you can’t teach values.

Then, think of your business as a body, with different organs – you need a liver and kidneys, lungs, heart and many more to do anything. The same goes in your business, there are many different functions that come together to make the system work. You need to be clear on the specific activities that need to be completed to get the job done. When you have those, check the resume against those activities.

And ask questions, and roleplay to get direct experience of their experience. Even within a field of experience, for example sales, not all sales is the same – did they sell a product or a service? How would they sell your product or service? Talk to the activities – what did they find easy, what did they find difficult and how did they respond to those difficulties?

This will give insight into how they would behave with your customers, and with you.

If you let the CV drive the interview, then you lose control of the interview.

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