Use numbers

This video is 10 minutes long. It explains how numbers add size and shape to your CV, and how to use them.

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See an index of all the lessons here.

Transcript:

Hello, my name is Matt Krause, and I am the CV Doctor in Istanbul, Turkey.

Today’s lesson is called, “Use Numbers”.

Numbers give your CV size. They give it shape. They make your accomplishments real, they give them life.

And think about who reads your CV — companies, managers, businesspeople. And business is all about money. Making money, and putting it into the bank.

If you can show your readers how you made money for your company, you’re GOLD!

Numbers tell the reader, “Last year, I gave that other company a million dollars. If you hire me, I’ll give you a million dollars, too”. My god, who WOULDN’T want that?

Remember, there are many ways to make money. Yeah, if you’re a sales person, you can sell more, that’s the most obvious way.

But if you aren’t a sales person, you can SAVE more, too.

Take me, for example…

I was always in purchasing and supply chain jobs. I wasn’t in anything directly related to sales — I wasn’t in the Sales Dept, I wasn’t in the Marketing Dept.

But I did have plenty of opportunities to SAVE money. So for this lesson, when we look at my CV, we’re going to look for places where I SAVED money, too…

Let’s start by looking for the first example…

Let’s look at this first job, the “Independent Business Communications Coach”. Numbers-wise, that’s kind of a tough one. Sure, my clients come back to me and say, “Matt, you know that presentation we were practicing for, I really rocked it, it went so well, and the customer was so impressed they signed the contract that same day”…

But the money connection isn’t very clear.

Sure, maybe the contract was worth $10 million, but maybe my client won the contract for many reasons.

My role in it was very indirect. If I say, “Coached client and made $10 million as a result”, it’s going to sound kind of weak.

So let’s bypass this one for now, and look for something more direct…

Look at this Eddie Bauer job…

Here, I don’t really need to use MORE numbers. I need to use numbers BETTER.

What do I mean? Let me show you…

Now, at this job, there was a lot of money involved. $10 million per month. That’s a lot of money. And yet, I’ve got it listed down there in the third bullet point. So I’m going to move it up, to the first bullet point…

Now, what else can be improved here…

Well, see how I mention the number 550 twice? In point #1 and point #2.

That’s confusing, and unnecessary. Remember, your CV is telling a story. And the reader is really busy. He doesn’t have time to read unnecessary information, it’s just going to confuse him. So let’s clean this up…

I’m going to leave the first one, so that bullet point is all about numbers — hey, it was a finance job, so numbers are good!

Let’s clean out the second one, then. I’m going to take out the “550”…

And read it now…

“Improved store-level sales forecasting for retail locations, so sales managers…”

Well, now the phrase “for retail locations” is unnecessary. The forecasts were “store level”, so people already know they were individual locations. And people already know it was “retail”, because I said so in the first bullet point…

So I’m just going to shorten this, to “Improved store-level sales forecasting, so sales managers…”

Alright. Now, let’s keep going. Remember, the point is, “Tell the story with numbers”…

Let’s find another example…

See this job down below, “Inventory Planner” at Progressive International. That one has lots of numbers, I like that one. For example, it says, “25 million”, “50 million”, “1200”, “17%”, “43%”. Nice. So let’s leave that alone for now.

Instead, let’s look at the one above it, “Purchasing Supervisor”…

Okay, my title was “Purcasing Supervisor”, but I only mention one number, “$6 million”. Surely, I can do better than that…

What are some examples of things I can say?

Well, I was a supervisor. How many people did I supervise? Three. Not a lot. It’s not like I had a big department with hundreds of people.

What else? Okay, how much were we purchasing? Well, about $25 million a year. But I already said that, in the job below, which was also at Progressive International…

We had 1200 sku’s, but I already talked about that.

So let’s find something else…

Ah, here’s something…

Look at this, “Overhauled supply chain structure and transferred finished goods assembly from original facility in USA to vendors in Hong Kong/China and Thailand.”

What was the benefit? Well, by moving assembly operations to Asia, we reduced the cost structure and brought the products back up to PIC’s profitability standards.

What was the profitability standard? Well, PIC required a gross margin of 37%, but that number is kind of confidential, and besides, the way it was calculated had so many variables that just saying the number, “37”, is meaningless.

So we don’t need to say the actual number.

All we need to do is add the phrase at the end, “…and Thailand, reducing the cost structure and bringing the products back up to PIC’s profitability standards.”

So there we go. I see other areas in my CV that need this same kind of improvement, but here in this lesson, that’s enough for today, so we’ll stop with the examples.

Remember, the goal of this lesson was: Use numbers in your CV. Tell your story with numbers. Companies like money, they understand money. So use numbers to tell your story.

Also, remember that your CV can ALWAYS be improved. You can ALWAYS apply these lessons. They will never get old. Improve your CV, and then improve it again, and then improve it again, and then improve it again.

Thank you for watching, good luck to you, and remember, I am always here to help. Take care.