As a leading legal recruitment house, we devote a great deal of time to studying our applicants’ CVs. We want to really understand them, and we know that little details about their background, their personal tastes and preferences can tell us a lot about the kind of work and working environment in which they will thrive. But sometimes we come across a CV that really has us scratching our heads, even as it puts smiles on our faces. We thought it would be fun to share some of these lighter moments with our readers.
The Pro Boner
The legal profession has to serve every corner of human commerce, from corner shops to construction giants. It welcomes candidates with non-legal backgrounds, and it’s always encouraging to see a CV that lists prior experience in retail or construction. For some reason our database shows an unusually large number of people wanting to enter the legal profession from a background in fast food and hospitality. Why this should be is not entirely clear; obviously they will have plenty of Bar experience, but will it be of the right kind? And we did wonder what particular skills might be brought to the law by the applicant who listed his current occupation as “chicken de-boner”.
As well as listing previous work experience, a good CV will allow the applicant to say things about themselves which demonstrate their aptitude and suitability for the position on offer. Often this reveals as much about what the applicant thinks will appeal to an employer as it does about his or her qualities as an employee. For instance, most candidates know that dependability is greatly valued by employers. But we can’t help feeling that the applicant who pointed at that, since the members of his family all lived to ripe old ages, he could be relied upon to “stick around”, was rather missing the point!
Applicants don’t always accept the jobs they are offered, and their reasons for doing so are always illuminating. They help us eventually find the position that perfectly suits them, by revealing things that may simply not have come to mind when they compiled their CV. But what were we to make of the candidate who declined an offer on the grounds that “I had my palm read, and the palm reader told me to turn it down”?
Wizards, Quidditch and Dog-Cuddling
But of course a CV also has that section called “Interests”, where applicants tell us about their recreational pursuits. Lawyers and Legal Secretaries are an eclectic bunch, and we’re used to seeing all manner of hobbies and volunteer work listed. Many of these help our recruitment efforts by suggesting greater suitability for some positions than others. We had an applicant list “Practising Wizard” among his interests, promising to bring the benefits of his craft to improving outcomes for his future employer. Other unique interests have included Qualified Vodka Taster, Member of the International Quidditch Association and recreational dog-cuddler to name a few!
So much for the weird and wonderful things we see occasionally. Every day, though, we see CVs that reveal the diversity of talent that is to be found in this great profession of ours. We see athletes, singers, writers and actors, some performing at the highest level whilst pursuing their legal career. In large part it’s this diversity of outlook and personality that makes legal recruitment such a rewarding and satisfying field.