How to choose your CV references wisely
The very thought of spending too much time on choosing references sounds like a chore, but should there be more thought applied to selecting references for your CV?
Whilst it may be tempting to simply list a few previous managers, there is another approach which may be far more beneficial…
Don’t go too high up the ladder
It’s important to choose someone who you have worked closely with, and who can give an accurate reference as opposed to a generic one. It’s quite common for an employer to contact a reference to find out that the manager can’t exactly remember who you are, or takes a few seconds for it to register.
If you choose someone too high up that didn’t work with you closely, you are going to end up with a generic reference that could give off the wrong impression to the employer. It might look great on your CV choosing the CEO of the company, but the reference they provide might be hazy and give off the wrong vibe.
Is the CEO providing a vague reference because they thought you performed poorly?
Who should you choose as a reference for your CV?
The best way to choose a reference is to consider someone who you know very well and have worked with closely for a good amount of time. Someone that will be able to explain easily and accurately how you performed and be able to go into detail if necessary.
You should also choose someone that you know will be willing to give you a positive reference. You should contact them in advance and not only ask for their permission, but also give them a heads up as to who might call and the things that would be great to discuss.
If you allow your reference to plan in advance in case they do get contacted, they will be better prepared to hopefully give you a glowing reference and impress the potential new employer.