Great book, well-written, and up to date. Recommends using social media and the internet in imaginative ways and provides some examples to help think through what would be best for your particular situation.
I also read 'Don't send a CV' which could leave you a bit confused, but overall the balance of advice helps to clear the thought process, especially if it has been a while since you had to look for a job in earnest.
I really learnt a lot from this book in terms of writing my CV. I am glad I have this book. I am happy it talks about application forms too and speculative letters. The only thing I have not found there is how to present your work history when you had several positions in the same company. But apart from that it's great, well written and rather straight to the point.
I first came across John Lees through his book 'How to choose a job you'll love'and was immediately impressed by the way in which he demonstrates how to make career planning a more straightforward process. I'm equally taken with 'Knockout CV' because I think it is clear that Lees has thoroughly researched the career landscape,to be up-to-date with trends and give a real-world perspective on how to make a success of the challenging experience of job hunting.
In this, as in other publications, the writing style is accessible. The scenarios he draws on are widely applicable and chime with the situations that, in my experience, job seekers typically face. It's comprehensive, but not off-puttingly dense. I think its particular strength, compared to other books I've consulted, is that it enables job seekers to see CVs through a recruiter's eyes - a good example of this is the inclusion of a sample annotated 'unfocused' CV. The book is a highly practical manual with easy-to-follow steps underpinned by a clear rationale - as busy people, we generally all need to be convinced to spend enough time on revamping our CV/job application materials and Lees provides compelling arguments for committing to the various activities that support the development of an effective document/online text. Also, he's not too proud to acknowledge that even a knockout CV isn't appropriate for every job-hunting situation.
If you put 10 career professionals in a room to discuss what makes a good CV, like as not there'll be arguments within the first 10 seconds, but it's hard to disagree with the advice offered in this book which I'd recommend for both job seekers and career consultants as a handy reference tool.
This is not just another typical CV guide. In an increasingly competitive jobs market more and more job seekers appear to be adopting a 'click-click-submit' scattergun approach to sending CVs. John Lees' timely publication - KnockOut CV, offers a very practical, accessible and evidence-based model, equipping you with the necessary up-to-date knowledge, skills and tactics...to get shortlisted. Read, reflect and act on these messages...to get noticed, interviewed and hired.
I've used John Lees' books for my career coaching clients over the past decade to good effect. This one is no exception and it is highly focused for today's job search context. Indeed he states that his previous book (CV messages to win jobs) was written in a different time and needed revising. Knockout CV does just that. It certainly refreshed and updated my approach such that I am in the process of enhancing my own cv and LinkedIn profile
Reading other reviews the point is well made about gaining a consensus from recruitment specialists and agencies. This book offers recent grounded research about the trends in cvs backed up by Lees' practical approach and importantly numerous examples of how to sharpen whole cvs as well as the enhancing their various parts.
So for job searchers a key resource to maximise success with clear guidance to develop the cv both on paper and online as well as ideas for a holistic approach to your next position.
If you are serious about making your cv an asset in your position search, this book is great value. It covers lots of areas you would expect in terms of themes, layout, content, length. In addition, it considers other aspects to help give your cv that competitive edge. For example, how to compress your message whilst still ensuring it retains impact, how to turn information into evidence, and how to road test your draft cv and then refine it further. The FAQs section is particularly useful, with answers to "should i mention x, y, or z?", those small points that you could spend ages agonising over. Also very pertinent is the guidance on how employers will respond, as this is based on evidence gathered through research.