Local businesswoman Victoria McLean is lending her expertise to an inspirational event called Women Work, which is taking place at the Assembly Hall Theatre in Tunbridge Wells on Friday 10 March.
Victoria – known as The CV Queen – runs her own business City CV (www.citycv.co.uk) out of Tonbridge and London, and lives near Tunbridge Wells.
She is one of the main speakers at the event and will be leading sessions on ‘Optimising LinkedIn as a jobseeker’, ‘LinkedIn for entrepreneurs – write the perfect profile’ and ‘How to present a career-break on your CV.’
Together with colleagues from City CV, Victoria will also be holding free CV advice sessions throughout the day at the event, which takes place from 9am to 4.30pm.
Victoria is the UK’s leading expert in writing CVs, career advice, helping you nail those all-important job interviews as well as offering expertise on any other career-based topic, making her the go-to expert for anything job-related.
A mum of two who founded her global award-winning company City CV single-handedly, Victoria is particularly passionate about helping women get back to work after career breaks to raise a family.
A former head-hunter and City recruiter, she also specialises in working with veterans to land them dream roles after leaving the military and helps graduates transition from study to the work place.
Here, she explains what and who inspired her to start City CV:
Who are the three leading figures who inspired your career?
I have always admired Ralph Lauren; he makes lots of people look good, making classic styles contemporary with clear cut lines with simple stories. The right Ralph Lauren outfit, with its brilliant tailoring, allows the very best first impression.
My second role model is Jane Eyre – she might be fictitious, but she stands for so much. She is a quiet, oppressed female, who is actually a star; she fights and triumphs over society. She’s also a woman who made a career for herself at a time when women rarely had careers.
Stephen Spielberg is also truly inspirational. He frequently makes movies about individuals on a difficult journey, many of whom are trying to find the right way. From ET and Saving Private Ryan to Indiana Jones.
Our clients are also individuals on a journey, trying to achieve a goal. Our role is to help them articulate this and realise success.
What have been your proudest achievements so far?
Winning in the international CV writing awards every year for the last five years. These are the equivalent of the Oscars of the CV writing world, an incredibly prestigious global CV and resume writing competition.
I am also unbelievably proud of City CV, having started out on my own, I now have a rapidly expanding team of 23 and counting!
How did you discover your passion for writing?
I was quite deaf as a child and had several operations. I loved to disappear into a world of reading and writing and developed the ability to read and write at a very early age. As I grew up, I was always interested in people and recognised they could say so much more about themselves. My passion for the written word allows me to help people present themselves from a different angle.
What was your inspiration behind setting up City CV?
When I had my first child I wanted more flexibility; to be the perfect mum with a career I felt passionate about. I wanted to build on the expertise I’d acquired in recruitment, both inhouse and as a head hunter, and specifically in helping people achieve their dreams.
I quickly learned that writing is a specialist skill and not everyone can do it. Even highly accomplished professionals who are brilliant at their jobs are not able to outline their key achievements (our clients include top journalists, CEOs, HR managers, marketeers and everyone in between). So I decided on writing CVs that would present people at their absolute professional best and give them advice on how to maximise their careers.
When I was working in recruitment, I always spent a lot of time coaching individuals. I saw people were not making the most of themselves and were not able to see or articulate their real talents. This was true of people at all stages in their careers – from non-executive directors and the senior executives of global news channels to CEOs of blue chips to first-time jobbers or graduates just starting out.
I like helping people understand what they can do to improve their professional standing and reputation. The mission is creating a story that people want to read.
What has been one of your most stand-out success stories so far?
One day I met a ballerina from the Royal National Ballet. She had been a ballerina since early childhood. This was all she had known and loved but then she severely damaged her spine on her honeymoon in her late 20s. Her dreams were shattered and she would never be able to dance professionally again.
I worked with her to establish what else she loved, what her strengths were and what would motivate her in her future career. Once we had established a new direction, I guided her to take certain additional qualifications, created her CV and coached her for interview.
She did well and is now a successful (and very happy) property manager and developer in the booming London real estate sector.
Which celebrity would you like to write a CV for?
Amal Clooney. She has been able to forge herself an amazing career through hard work, determination and focus. She is a passionate human rights activist. It would be an honour to work with her.
Women Work is on 10 March. For more information, go here:
For more information on City CV go here: https://citycv.co.uk/
You can read Victoria’s articles on The Huffington Post here: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/author/victoria-mclean