by Michael Cheary
OK, so putting a personal statement together is never easy…
But even if you’ve written one before, how you write a personal statement will always depend on your current situation. In other words, what you write as a school leaver will look a lot different to someone who has many years of previous work experience.
To help you find the right one for you, here are some real personal statement examples – and how you can use them to make your CV stand out:
Free CV Template
Download Free CV Template
University personal statement
First things first: personal statements aren’t just for your CV.
They’re also a key part of the UCAS application process, and a way to sell yourself to prospective universities. However, they will be much more detailed – and longer – than the one you write for a job application.
We’ve covered everything you need to know about personal statements for university here.
School leaver personal statement example
All personal statements should be tailored to the role in question. No exceptions.
Start by answering the following three questions: Why do you want to work in this industry? What skills make you right for the role (hint: use the job description)? And where do you want to go in your career?
However, school leavers should always focus on the latter – and what you can bring to the business, as well as focusing on the knowledge and skills gained through education, rather than employment history. Soft skills are also a great place to start.
A highly motivated and hardworking individual, who has recently completed their A-Levels, achieving excellent grades in both Maths and Science. Seeking an apprenticeship in the engineering industry to build upon a keen scientific interest and start a career as a maintenance engineer. Eventual career goal is to become a fully-qualified and experienced maintenance or electrical engineer, with the longer-term aspiration of moving into project management.
School leaver CV template
Graduate personal statement example
Similar to a school leaver personal statement, but with extra attention paid to specific things you’ve studied during higher education.
Once again, try and explain why you’re applying and where you’d like to go in your career, as well as the specific skills or knowledge you can offer. But try and drop in a few more details on your degree (projected grades are fine), as well as particular modules that have inspired you to work in this profession – if possible.
And remember: a personal statement written for a CV differs greatly from one written for a university application. If you haven’t written one before, you should start by reading our tips on how to write a personal statement.
A recent business economics graduate with a 2:1 honours degree from the University of X, looking to secure a Graduate Commercial Analyst position to use and further develop my analytical skills and knowledge in a practical and fast-paced environment. My career goal is to assume a role which allows me to take responsibility for the analysis and interpretation of commercial data for a well-respected and market-leading leading company.
Graduate CV template
Unemployed/redundancy personal statement example
Dealing with redundancy is never easy. But when dealt with in the right way, it needn’t be a hindrance when making applications.
Put the main focus on your employment history, and provide further information for your break in your cover letter. You don’t even necessarily need to mention it again, if you’ve already explained it elsewhere.
Remember, your personal statement is intended to sell yourself. So emphasise your positives rather than apologising for a negative.
Driven Retail Manager with over ten years’ experience in the fashion industry. Proven track record of success, including managing the top performing store in the region, and having the lowest staff turnover rate of all UK outlets. Currently out of work due to company closure, looking for the right opportunity to bring my expertise to a well-established fashion brand in an upper management position.
How to: Deal with redundancy
Redundancy CV template
Career break personal statement example
There are many good reasons someone may need to take a career break.
Some possible examples could include parental leave, caring for a family member, plans to travel or long-term illness. However, whatever the reason for your own break, it’s never something you should feel the need to justify to a prospective employer.
In fact, knowing how to explain a gap in your CV is mostly about confidence. So leave any extra explanation for your cover letter and focus your personal statement on your career before the break – and any skills learned during your time off which may be applicable to the role.
A highly motivated and experienced PA, currently looking to resume my professional career after dedicating the last five years to raising a family. Excellent admin skills, thorough knowledge of all Microsoft Office programs, as well as proficiency in minute-taking and extensive experience liaising with clients. After volunteering for one day a week with a local charity to refresh my skills, now fully committed to continuing my career on a full-time basis.
Career break CV template
Career change personal statement example
If you’re changing industry completely, think about any transferable skills and applicable to the sector you’re moving into.
Any numbers you can give to demonstrate your success could be crucial – even if you’re moving into an area where your expertise may seem slightly different. So always aim to back up your claims with real examples.
Focus on one or two achievements, demonstrate the impact they had, and you’ll instantly start adding value to your application.
As an experienced sales manager, my tenacious and proactive approach resulted in numerous important contract wins. My excellent networking skills have provided my team with vital client leads, and my ability to develop client relationships has resulted in an 18% increase in business renewals for my current organisation. After eight years in sales, currently seeking a new challenge which will utilise my meticulous attention to detail, and friendly, professional manner.
Changing careers: What you need to know
Career change CV template
If you’re still not sure of what to write, don’t panic.
Crafting a winning personal statement will take time, especially if you haven’t written one before. Use these examples as a loose structure to follow, and you’ll be able to add to them as your experience grows.
And remember: you should always aim to edit your personal statement for each role you apply for. That way, you can ensure you’re really selling yourself to their role, rather than simply sending the same generic statement for each application.
It should only take a few more minutes to complete. But if it’s enough to attract an employers interest, it will be time well spent in the long run.
How to write a personal statement
Personal statement dos and don’ts
Read more CV help & tips
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Author: Hannah Bell / Codes: Blog / Published: 15/06/2017
Unfortunately getting an Emergency Medicine consultant job is not quite as easy as just nailing an interview. In reality, the preparation starts way earlier so really this blog should be called, how to get the consultant job of your dreams.
In the middle of an Emergency Medicine recruitment crisis, there may appear to be plenty of consultant jobs. However, getting a job in the hospital you want, with the right team, at the right time, may not be as easy as it seems.
Having been through the process relatively recently, here are my top 10 tips to success.
1.Find Your Work Family
Youve heard your colleagues say it many times, choosing your work colleagues is like choosing a wife. Youre going to have to work together clinically day in day out and sit next to your collegues in the office for years to come.
You want a team that are going to build you back up when youre down after a terrible day, and share in your celebrations of success when you secure funding for your next project. You want a team that share the same ethos towards work, education, and patient care, so choose wisely.
It helps if youve worked with the team before on your middle grade rotations. If not, pick up some locum shifts. Make yourself known to be enthusiastic, dynamic and hard working. The kind of person people get on with and want on their team.
2.Show Interest Early
Many hospitals plan their recruitment several years ahead and creating jobs takes time. Funding has to be acquired, and in times of austerity this is often difficult to achieve. Jobs are sometimes created when people move on, or go on maternity leave, but dont rely on this.
Plan ahead. Speak to the Clinical Director early and make your feelings known. Show why you would be a great asset to the existing team, and ask if there is anything you can be doing in the meantime to improve your chances of being successful. Even after a job is created, it usually takes a few months for the job application to appear, then a further month to closing, and another month to the interview. Dont start thinking about jobs a fortnight before your CCT or youll be disappointed.
3. Find The Gap
There is little point in being that guy who loves trauma in a department of trauma enthusiasts. Find out how you can add value to the department. If you have a special interest or skill, make sure the team know what you can bring to the mix, and how you will use your extra skills to the benefit of the department.
4.Buff Your CV
When the panel read your CV, they should be able to understand at a glance what your strengths are. Make the boring bits short (everybody has an FRCEM, and went to medical school, this is not the highlight of your CV).
List your recent jobs, educational achievements, any research and audit you have done, and your management experience. Put your most recent achievements first in the list, as the most recent achievements are likely to be the most important. Some panels like to read a covering letter or personal statement. This should be a clear demonstration of why you are applying for the job, liberally peppered with indications that you know all about what the job entails and why it is the job for you.
Some health boards have an online application system, but submit your CV as well. This is your chance to show who you are, on your own terms.
Get a consultant you trust to read and critique it. Finally spell check it, and spell check it again. And again.
5. Meet The Execs
Once you have been shortlisted, there are certain people that you need to chat to. Your department lead should be able to give you the names of specific people, but in general you should always ask to meet with the department Clinical Director, Medical Director, and a Senior Manager. The benefit of this is twofold.
Firstly, it gives you an opportunity to introduce yourself in a less formal setting (when I say less formal, you still need to put your suit on), but it also gives you the opportunity to ask questions which may help you in your interview. Although not on the panel, it is useful to also chat with the lead nurse, as they can give you a good insight into departmental workings.
There will always be questions on health board strategy, including issues surrounding hospital policies, flow, exit block and escalation. Find out the problems the health board are facing, and ask what they plan to do about the issues in the emergency department. In the interview, show that you understood the issues, have read around the subject, and have some of your own ideas about how they can be addressed.
6. Know Your Panel
It can be daunting sitting across a board room table from lots of important people, but it helps to know who they all are and find out a bit about them beforehand. The mix is variable, but there will usually be a couple of consultants from the department, the Medical Director, a member of the senior health board, an external panellist (usually an EM consultant from another hospital), and a representative from the university.
This is the biggest interview of your life, so winging it is not an option. Find as many consultants as you can and ask them what they were asked in their interview. Make lists of questions, read around your subject and practice your answers. Know your CV back to front, plus its strengths and weaknesses. Know the department back to front, plus its strengths and weaknesses. Know why you want to work there, and why they should employ you. Read strategic documents on flow and escalation. Understand clinical governance and the safety issues in your department. Know what education and research your department offers and have ideas about how you can help to improve it. Have examples of times when you experienced conflict, stress, poor communication, a complaint from a patient and difficulties with a colleague.
Finally, write down the 5 things that you REALLY want to tell the panel about, and construct your answers to ensure that these points are covered.
Practice, practice, practice. In front of your partner, the mirror and then your colleagues.
8. Dress To Impress
They say, ‘dress for the job you want, not the job you have. Id take it one step further and say, dont let the Medical Director out-dress you. Look smart, professional and feel like you own that interview.
Disclaimer: Shopping may be required.
9. Calm Your Nerves
Nerves can be your best friend and your worst enemy. Use them constructively, and dont allow yourself to become overwhelmed. If you panic, take a breath, a sip of water and have a think. You can do this!
10. Be Obama Not Trump.
Be yourself. Show the panel your personality. A little smile, eye contact and some body language go a long way. You need to show the panel your strengths, but nobody likes an ego. Be professional, but somebody that they can get on with. In short, be like Obama, not Trump.