Completing job application forms by using the same tricks as authors

Like all authors, when writing a story you need to set the scene and create intrigue “sat alone in a darken room, Stella knew death was upon her…” it is the same principle for job hunters writing a job application form, on the personal profile you need to set the scene and create intrigue “a highly qualified and experienced manger, who in the last 2 years has taken 3 under performing companies and quickly turn them into multimillion pound businesses…”


With both opening lines you would have created an image in your mind off Stella and the Experienced Manager, because to make sense of what we read our brain uses images, which means with the right words you can create positive images to ensure you secure more job interviews – keep reading to find out how you can gain more job interviews through your application form.


The opening line from the Stella story tells you that this will be a thriller or horror story; already you want to know who Stella is? Why is she sat in a Dark room? How does she know that death is upon her? Is she going to be killed? By whom? Is she old or does she have a deadly disease?


Again with your opening line for your application form, you need to write a sentence that catches the employer’s imagination, as they are often fed up of reading the same old information “I’m a good team player who is reliable and flexible…”


With the experience manager example above, the employer will be asking: how did you turn these companies around? What did you actually do? Which companies did you turn around? What product did they sell? How did you turn these companies around? Can you turn my company around?


The difference between a story and your application form is that with a story you can use your imagination and take the story in any direction you wish and with the application form you have to ensure you meet the essential criteria on the job specification in the experienced manager example, the job specification required: “We are looking for an experienced and qualified manger..”


The idea throughout the job profile is to exceed the job specification and create anticipation loops making the employer want to know more about you and how you have achieved such great results “I have the formula to win completive bids which has led me to writing and winning the last 22 bids each with a monetary value of over £2 million pound..” you are now showing your worth to the employer who willing be thinking, I can employ you for £60-£80,000 a year and you can write and win 22 multimillion pound bids – there is no need for a calculator with this sum.


This technique can be used in any industry, like I said all you need to do is exceed the job specification criteria, add your worth and keep the employer guessing.


Let’s look at a retail job spec:


Serving customers, working the till and setting up displays – so the first rule is to explain that you can easily complete this task, then add worth to yourself followed by creating intrigue.


“As an experienced sales assistant working for some of the most established retail outlets throughout Europe, I understand the importance of creating eye catching window displays to intrigue potential customers passing the shop window. My window designs are so affective that in the last 12 months, items showcased in my creative windows displays have sold out within a 2 week time period. The success of my dressed windows increase the outlet profit by 50% within 12 months of being employed, which led to me travelling to outlets throughout the UK training other window designers in creative window dressing, this training exercise led to a UK company increase in profits by 37%”


You maybe asking why I didn’t mention “serving customers or working the till” by recording “experienced sales assistant working for some of the most established retail outlets throughout Europe” the employer will make a generalisation that I can serve customers and work a till, as any experienced retail sales assistant would have completed these task which means you don’t have to write detailed statements on your CV as you can show your worth by giving general examples and I would with some essential criteria you will need to add detailed examples – but, we will come to this at a later..


After reading the initial statement for the sales assistant position, the employer will be asking; how do you display items to increase a massive turnaround in profit and new customers (you may have used live models, you don’t need to tell them that here though as the line regarding the increase in profit will have hooked them) ? What is your secret formula? Will you increase my profits through creative window displays? Can you train my team to achieve the same success?


Obviously you cant lie on an application form, what you need to do is think about what you can bring to that organisation, record this as your strength and like all good storytellers create intrigue – we all love magic tricks until we know how to do them. Once you start gaining job interview, I have a powerful interview influencing technique that I will teach you to secure yourself more job offers after each interview, but more on that later….. 


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