Apr 19, 2009

Pour resumer...

Springtime is all about flowers blossoming, birds chirping, wardrobe replenishing (yes, especially that) and also - CV updating. After much procrastination, I decided that looking for a new job (for whenever the hiring freezes finally melt) would be a lot easier if I had an updated resumé sous le coude. And so a drizzly Sunday afternoon was filled with CV fun, such as finding "action words" to start bullet points with and innovative ways to say "I'm really good at aligning boxes on a powerpoint slide."

I decided to stick with the "skill set" CV most of us adopted at INSEAD, which works particularly well if you've done very different things in your career, and are applying to do yet another completely different thing. Filling in the law firm jobs sections was relatively pain-free (mostly thanks to the fact that I had already gone through the process last year and therefore didn't need to do much other than the odd nip and tuck). But the BM section... now, that was a real brainteaser.

Honestly, it's not that I haven't learned anything at BM, no matter what I might say when I'm on a whinge binge. I've noticed, particularly over the last month or so, that I'm not quite the same person I was when I started. I clearly have developed new reflexes and thought processes that I would have been incapable of a year ago, never mind three years ago when I was still a lawyer through and through. No, the problem isn't that nothing's been learnt; the problem is that "consulting skills" are unbelievably difficult (for me) to explain. I can only seem to define them by what they aren't. You don't learn anything about steel production, or asset management, or luxury distribution, or whatever else you're pontificating about that day. You don't learn how to do anything that, in theory, your clients couldn't do themselves, like defend a billion-dollar lawsuit or repair faulty plumbing. But you do learn something. And it is useful, I think (hope). Maybe it's more like a sixth sense - but I can't really put that down on my CV (skill: I see dead people?!)...

Besides creating my CV (on Excel, I really am becoming a consultant) I spent the rest of the weekend wallowing. I didn't go to the gym, I didn't go out, I didn't clean the apartment. I just stayed in bed, cried my eyes out, and wondered whether all this chest pain was a sign of an impending heart attack. But I'm still standing so I guess it just means that getting your heart broken does actually physically hurt your heart. I'd forgotten. Wallowing may not be either productive or pleasant, but it is one of those things you just need to go through to get it out of your system. My hope is the good old system will be spic and span and entirely rid of all evil residue by the time I go to my friend's wedding in London this weekend and then jet of to New York.

Happiness minus 5 days and counting.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Loved the Sixth Sense joke!

Speaking of hard to value skills on a C.V., when I worked in a law firm, we used to break the monotony of due diligence reviews, by glancing at the CVs that would come into the fax machine at 10:00 pm. One aspiring associate boasted on her CV, the 15 years she had spent as an acrobatic trapeze artist. We contemplated sending her a fake Thank You letter informing her that our Circus Law department was fully staffed. Instead we just let the CV go into the Managing Partner's mailbox where it unceremoniously got rejected.

-Million Dollar Spatula

Anonymous said...

Here's a thought: why not whip out ye olde INSEAD CV booke and see how others did the whole consulting CV thang...

res i(p)sa said...

Thanks anonymous (do I perhaps recognize that sarcastic writing voice?!) I did think of that but was worried I would then be incapable of another original thought...