Writing a Personal Statement

You may be required to write a personal statement for a number of different reasons. You will include a short version on your CV, in the Profile Summary. Also you may need one for a college or university application.

It is well worth investing the time to develop a strong and current personal statement if you are in the market for new jobs or courses. It is a summary of who you are, and what you can contribute.

personal-statementSo make the most of this opportunity to sell yourself, by highlighting your skills, experience, capabilities and talents.

Imagine if you met someone at a social or business meeting, or an interview, and they asked you to tell them a little about yourself. What are the key things that define you? Who are you? What are the important things you need to include to give the other person a snapshot of you, an understanding of you and your abilities?

These few sentences allow the reader to get a glimpse of the real you and your personality , so this is an important piece of writing .You want to clearly illustrate what you can contribute, and what your goals are.

So first of all think about the things that define you, and list them so you can make sure you include all the important aspects of you that must be included. Ask family and friends to review that list and see if they want to add anything.

Then you need to look at the requirements that have been specified for the application you are making and make sure you state that you meet all of them. So you can see that although you have a personal statement , you will always need to review it and tailor it in the light of the application you are making to ensure you “tick all the boxes “ –which competencies are called for in the job description, what the requirements are for the course you want to take . Deal with each and every point, and then develop your lists into some well-thought out sentences.

Make sure you cover all these points;-

  • That you fulfil the requirements of the job or course, as discussed above.
  • Maintain a positive enthusiastic tone and include your strengths and abilities
  • Outline your motivation –say why you want this particular job, or want to study this course. Give some background to your interest and experience in the field.
  • Illustrate how this is a great fit with your long term objective or career goal
  • Use examples to evidence your interest and experience. Let it be known that you have relevant work experience or are a volunteer in the field, or a member of relevant clubs.
  • Show what insights this additional experience has taught you, and reflect on them as well as describing them. Mention observations of managers, mentors and their skills, attributes, professional qualities, that you admire and aspire to yourself.
  • Don’t forget to include transferable skills – organisational skills, leadership, teamwork, time management.
  • Give examples of projects you have done, conclusions drawn
  • Give specific examples of any office or positions of responsibility you have held, and say what you learnt from that –perhaps your confidence was boosted.
  • Demonstrate that you are an independent and analytical thinker


A recent Politics, Philosophy and Economics graduate with a first class degree from Oxford University, looking to secure a research and advisory position in Local or National Government to develop my analytical skills and knowledge in a challenging environment. My career goal is to work in National Government and use my skills to contribute to the economic growth of the country.

That’s it for our look at business and personal documentation. I do hope you have enjoyed this series and found it useful.