Ninety per cent of the CVs that come my way tell me about the writer’s interests. So, I assume you want to know mine?
I hate soccer. Actually that’s not an interest, that’s more or less a religious passion for me, so let’s move on to something I like. I like Formula One. I’ve been to several GPs across Europe and Asia and know quite a bit about the sport’s history.
I like wine, although in the last couple of years I’ve become more of a cider drinker. I have a weakness for soft cheese and sushi, and will eat out at the slightest opportunity.
I also like to travel. At the last count I’d been to nineteen countries. If I could live and work in Lisbon I would. I also love Bosnia and Northern Ireland which shocks some people.
I love dogs but don’t have one for various tedious reasons. I’ve read more than anyone else I know. Mostly about wars. I will probably be the last reader of a broadsheet newspaper in the whole world.
Do you want to hire me to write your CV? Would you like me to rebuild your LinkedIn profile? Can I have your money to coach you through improvements in your interview technique?
Your honest answer is you have no idea. Everything I’ve just told you is irrelevant. What you want to know is this:
- Does this guy have a background in recruitment?
- Can he write well?
- Does he understand all the odd tricks and turns that can make LinkedIn work for me?
- Has he interviewed enough people to help me improve my own interview performance?
- Has he already helped people get a better job, or establish themselves as interim managers or consultants?
Frankly knowing my Sennas from my Fangios and having dined at the same table Churchill did during his stays in Madeira isn’t going to help you at all.
On the other hand I was an executive recruiter for twelve years and my LinkedIn profile is full of praise from happy clients I’ve helped get their next job. That’s what you really want to know. That’s the information you need to help you decide.
So, stop wasting space in your CV on “interests”. In a dozen years I never appointed anyone on the basis of this information. I wonder how many person hours candidates waste every year thinking about it and writing it up?
Save yourself the time and the worry. I’m not interested.