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September 29, 2017
Job hunting is a tricky business because you can’t predict what one person is going to love or indeed hate. However, everyone respects a well-written, error-free CV.
Most potential employers spend a few seconds scanning each of the many CVs they receive for a job opening and don’t read any of them in detail. This might seem like an excuse to be careless with your grammar and spelling, but the opposite is true. You won’t get an interview if it’s riddled with mistakes or grammar errors. And to some employers, mistakes jump out from the page even during a quick scan.
Probably the most heinous crime of them all and most annoyingly the one spellcheckers can often miss. The clue is in the apostrophe. If you use an apostrophe, it’s a contraction of the words you are. On the other hand, your means belonging or relating to you.
The apostrophe is one of the most widely misused punctuation marks in the English language. Get it wrong and you could:
1. Change the meaning of what you are trying to say.
2. Look like a numpty.
The two most common misuses of the apostrophe are Its vs. It’s and including an apostrophe in a plural.
Its vs. It’s:
It’s quite easy to get this wrong, but a handy little trick is to replace its with his (or hers) and see if the text still makes sense.
Its is simply a genderless version of his and hers. If the sentence still makes sense, you’ve got the right one. Likewise, with it’s – just replace it with it is to test its coherence.
This is right up there with you’re and your. You should never use an apostrophe before the S in a plural, even when pluralising abbreviations like DVD or CD.
A triple threat. These homophones (words that sound the same but are spelled differently) can really make you look daft! Learn the differences and then check them, then check again.
You should accept that good grammar and spelling are needed, except if you don’t want that job.
A mistake people often make is writing words as they sound. It’s easy to get convinced that ‘have’ should be spelled ‘of’, since we say it say so quickly. It should never appear in your writing.
Incorrect: I would of got that job interview if I hadn’t made all those spelling mistakes on my CV. Correct: Yes, you would have.
If you use a word you’re not familiar with, you won’t be sure how to use it properly in a sentence – which can actually make you sound less intelligent (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9s0LqZMsfTQ) and can make your sentences sound plain weird. Just be honest with your CV writing.
BE CAREFUL HOW YOU USE THEM. Capital letters are hard to read so only use them where they belong; at the start of a sentence or at the start of a proper noun. DO YOU UNDERSTAND? And check through carefully to avoid missing them where they should be capital letters, and full stops are the bare bones basics of writing, NO EXCUSES!
Once again, the key here will be checking, checking and checking again. Try to find someone to double check your CV before you send it as it is really tricky to spot your own errors when you have been so involved in the writing. If that is not a possibility try leaving it overnight and reading it over again the next morning. You will be amazed what you will find in the cold light of day!