May I Present Myself?

We all want to be accepted on our merits. We want to be judged for the good work we do or the value we can bring to an organization in the form of experience and education. Everyone wants to be liked for who they are and not some fake mold they fit into. In a perfect world, perhaps it would be just this way.

In general, however, we are judged first on sensory cues: the way we dress, speak, smell, and conduct ourselves. You may be the most qualified applicant the human resources professional has ever seen but if you haven’t bathed in a week, your résumé will go to the bottom of the pile. Let’s face it: it’s human nature to evaluate by our senses first. It’s all that’s accessible to us in order to make initial judgments about whether or not we wish to go deeper. Are you worth getting to know better? Do we want to give you the benefit of the doubt and allow you to prove your talents and abilities? Then we will instinctively, often unconsciously, make evaluations about character, intelligence, flexibility, and aptitude by the image presented to us.

You see, there is almost an equal importance in the image a person presents as there is in the abilities he or she brings to the workplace. How we dress, how we speak, and our behavior tells others what we think about them. If a man shows up for an interview in a raggedy old pair of pants and a windbreaker, the message he sends is that he does not consider the interviewer or the company worth getting dressed up for. So why should he be considered worth hiring?

People judge character by the manners they see. They assess professionalism and prudence by the clothes we wear and the way we wear them. They read something in our style and wonder whether or not we’re educated by the way we use the English language. There’s no point in getting worked up about it; it’s just the way people operate. What we must do is recognize that in order to help people see the most important things about us-our values, our talents, our virtues and strengths-we must clear away as many impediments as we can. What we do when considering the image we present in any situation is remove the roadblocks that prevent people from wanting to know us better and truly see the important characteristics that tell them who we really are.

Take your manners, for instance. Do you know how to introduce yourself? Do you know how to introduce someone else to an executive? Do you know how to conduct yourself in a fine restaurant? Are you aware of habits you may be practicing that irritate others? Maybe you need a course in etiquette. Etiquette is simply the timeless rules of behavior that prevent us from being unintentionally offensive, rude, unkind, unfair, or self-centered. Gracious manners always make others feel comfortable. They tell people that you are capable of professional behavior that invites responsibility. If you need improvement in this area, there are any number of courses in etiquette you can take advantage of. You can also go to your local library and find the section on etiquette and refresh yourself on the guidelines that fit your need. Gathering the rules for good behavior is not hard. It’s like driving: you learn, you practice, and pretty soon you aren’t focused anymore on the mechanics of driving; you’re enjoying the act of driving and appreciating the scenery. Seek the information and then practice it.

Need some help with the way you present yourself physically? Find someone who dresses impeccably and tell him or her how much you admire their style. Ask them if they will mentor you in the image department. Don’t be embarrassed-most anyone would be flattered by this and would delight in assisting you! Tell them you need someone to take you under their wing and give you a crash course on looking like a million bucks. Remember to be willing to take their advice! Style is all about learning basics and then modifying to suit the situation. If you need to learn the basics, don’t fight with what you’re being told. Another resource is the invaluable cable television show “What Not To Wear” on The Learning Channel (TLC). Check your local listings to find the program and listen carefully how the consultants explain the rules of dressing appropriately.

Presenting yourself with excellence means that you may have to do some search-and-rescue operations: you must search out what you are aware you need and rescue yourself from the disaster of not getting how important this can be! Don’t let the sensory information you offer to the people you meet put up a brick wall. If you really want to be judged on your merits, you must make the path to your character smooth and easy to navigate. Make yourself presentable and acceptable so they can get to know the real you!

5 Top Tips For An Effective Executive CV Presentation

For the most effective Executive CV Presentation, there are 5 important elements to include for maximum impact. Your CV must gain some serious attention and immediately grab the reader. If your CV is just average, there will be plenty of others whose CV is well above average in this competitive environment, so you need to be able to make yours shine out. Let me show you what you need to do with these 5 top tips.

1. Your Profile or Summary Statement

An effective Profile or Summary is arguably the most important part of your CV. Use it to focus the reader’s attention on what makes you stand out: your dynamic record of achievement, your unique skills set, the value you bring to the table – all things that nobody else can claim so that it decisively sets the tone for the rest of the document.

2. Your Key Skills Or Competencies

This section can be presented in so many different ways, but the truth is there is only one way to make this section right: make it interesting to read. Your key competencies are much more than just skills; they are your strongest selling points! For the most effective executive CV presentation they should be dynamic and industry-specific. This section of your executive CV presentation also acts as a keyword-rich area that enables your CV to be quickly found by recruitment software in quite widespread use today.

3. Your Career History

For an effective executive CV presentation you need to describe the purpose of your role with powerful, punchy job descriptions. The descriptions of your roles and responsibilities in previous positions give a framework and context to your results before outlining your achievements in bullet points. So describe the ‘why’ of your job with reference to the size of your responsibility and at what level in the organization you report, then follow this with the ‘how’ and finally the results to sell yourself fully in the CV through your achievements and results to give them a frame of reference.

4. Personal Information

It used to be traditional to list interests or hobbies but this information doesn’t really give the employer any additional information about your work performance. Employers aren’t interested in your hobbies – they just want to know if you can bring value to their organization. Show them you value their time and are strictly business-oriented by keeping this information off the CV.

5. Language or Voice

Use words and adjectives at an appropriate level to successfully promote your abilities and place you above the competition. That doesn’t mean using unnecessarily long or complex words but if you over-simplify, or use too low-level language, it won’t carry the weight or authority it needs to represent you at the right level.

Please do not use personal pronouns (‘I’, ‘me’, ‘my’), keep your executive CV presentation impersonal and written so that it can be scanned quickly as many recruiters allow barely 30 seconds for the initial pass.

Executive CV Presentation Strategy

If you possess the quality of skills, experience and qualifications that are required for a job of senior and executive calibre, your CV must do you justice in reflecting this. In today’s economic climate, every vacancy attracts hundreds of qualified applicants and is incredibly competitive. This means that you cannot allow your CV to be anything less than absolutely outstanding, because your CV is the only representation of you that employers have.

A Clearer and More Present Danger

There have been endless debates over the moral justification for the preemptive strike against Iraq. Suffice to say such action, to be even considered justified, must be in proportionate response to the documented authenticity, severity and immediacy of the threat in question. I will pass on that particular debate for now, but as to the justification for or morality of a preemptive strike per se, it would be foolhardy to reject such an option out of hand. Case in point: Iran.

Iran, a country whose president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, recently demanded that “Israel must be wiped off the map” and whose totalitarian regime punishes “un-Islamic” behavior among its own people. Iran, a country which has attempted to acquire nuclear-bomb technology. Iran, a country that flouted a previous agreement to stop enriching uranium. Iran, a country that is an avowed and documented enemy of the United States repeatedly calling for “Death to America.” Iran, where the Ayatollah Khomeini was the first to install a modern Islamic theocratic system, I.e., a totalitarian blend of mosque and state. Iran, the country that seized our embassy in Tehran in 1979 and murdered hostages. Iran, a major sponsor of terrorism; financing, sheltering and training terrorists from groups like Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad and al-Qaida. It is submitted that Iran presents a far greater danger to the United State’s security than did Iraq, for Iran poses a clear and present danger inasmuch as it may be building nuclear weapons sooner rather than later.

Iran’s asserts that its nuclear objectives are solely for achieving nuclear energy for civilian purposes. Those who believe that engage in whimsy. Iran is one of the largest oil producer in OPEC and has large gas reserves; in fact, it has more oil to generate electricity than it could possibly consume. Clearly, any need for nuclear energy is absurd.

More to the point, Britain, Germany, and France are currently engaged in diplomatic efforts with Iran. These efforts, supported by Washington, are seen as a win-win way to resolve the issues associated with Iran’s suspected program to develop nuclear weapons. Ironically, such talks were triggered in the first place by Iran’s flouting of a previous agreement to stop enriching uranium. By negotiating with Iran and its mullahs and granting them economic incentives, including the possible purchase of commercial aircraft and entry into the World Trade Organization, some believe Iran will forego its darker ambitions and the West can thereby avoid a military confrontation. Of course, while the incentive can help strengthen Iran’s economy, they also turn it into an even greater threat. What Iran really wants is a nuclear weapon…..the better to use as a blackmailing wedge at future negotiating tables (as is the case with North Korea) and far worse, the better to use against its enemies such as Israel. If it can accomplish this while having become economically stronger thanks to the Euro economic give away’s, all the better.

This entire deal smells of mortgaging the future by purchasing the sinecure of peace today; a “deal” that would allow Iran to gain critically valuable time in which to engage, if not complete, its nuclear-weapons research. This approach could very well result in Iran declaring at some future date (as did North Korea to everyone’s recent horror) that it has succeeded in building nuclear weapons.

Only the intellectually naive and high flying doves, who dangerously ignore the harsh lessons of history, can truly believe that such fear-based diplomatic appeasement will deflect Iran from its not-so-hidden agenda. As Margaret Thatcher once said, “I seem to smell the stench of appeasement in the air.” Far more telling is this quote by Jose Maria Aznar, former Spanish President, in June of this year, “Europe likes appeasement very much; this is one of the most important differences between us and the States…”

Some may recall that in 1981, Israeli war planes, in a widely criticized but extremely successful preemptive stealth attack ordered by then-Prime Minister Menachem Begin, destroyed an unfinished Iraqi nuclear reactor. The raid rendered Iraq’s nuclear capability null and void. Nevertheless, based on a subsequent and hotly debated perceived threat of weapons of mass destruction, the United States launched a preemptive invasion against that country–even though the threat of biological and nuclear weapons in Iraq was never truly established after the invasion. Surely a more real threat of weapons of mass destruction of the nuclear variety exists in Iran today and suggests strong consideration of a manifestly more justified strike against that country. The time is now to zero in on Iran within the context of what kind of threat it presents. Iran should be condemned forthwith and its nuclear ambitions effectively muzzled. If not, we can expect a far deadlier avowed enemy to confront.

Most assuredly, The United States should actively encourage and actively assist the efforts of the pro-freedom fighters and courageous students in Iran in order to launch a revolution from within that will overturn its terrorist-supporting regime. No one despises Islamic theocracy more than the young people and Iranian students who, for the past several years, have held mass protests in the streets. Despite strong and brutal opposition, this rebellion is growing and The United States should encourage it in whatever way it can. This is the ideal solution. But the United States also has an obligation to defend its people from Iran’s continuing and escalating threats–and to do this by whatever means necessary.

“No man can tame a tiger into a kitten by stroking it. There can be no appeasement with ruthlessness. There can be no reasoning with an incendiary bomb.” –Franklin D. Roosevelt