Go to Top

Fix Your CV: Lessons From YUMA’s god-King Xerxes (and other mortals)

Photo by Devi Nath

If your CV were a Carnival masquerader, it should be Xerxes from the band YUMA. Here’s why: the character portrayed by Kamel Ali from Arouca is both memorable and believable.

So memorable, even people like me who shunned Carnival this year (and every year) will recall Xerxes a decade from now — how he paraded his bald head and ripped shoulders above other average revellers: sequined, feathered, forgotten. Let’s agree: Ali and his design team hit the mark with that costume.

I know nothing about fashion design or choreography. I am not pretending to know much about Carnival costumes either. I’m just relying on personal taste for this one so I’ll go with this: Ali owned it. That’s why we will remember him.

Ali didn’t just wear that get-up. He wasn’t six feet of bronze, muscular nothingness. No — he got into character for the role. He was Shahanshah, a Great Persian King. He was believable.

With outstretched arms, it was as if he were saying to us, “Behold my kingdom, Port-of-Spain. Behold the masque of YUMA’s god-King Xerxes — now come here and let me wine on thee.”

So back to CVs — is yours memorable and believable? Will an employer be able to recall anything about it — about you — from a stack of 30?

Or have you sold your soul to Times New Roman?

It’s a competitive, sub-$50-per-barrel-of-oil world out there, T&T. It can’t be business as usual, can it?

Talk to the people in HR and they will tell you it’s too much “same ‘ole, same ‘ole.”

Here are other mere mortals who’ve really thought about what they want their CVs to say about them. You have no excuse.

As you look at these images, repeat these words quietly for five minutes. Softly, now: “Reading my CV should be more exciting than staring at a napkin. Reading my CV should be more exciting than staring at a napkin. Reading my CV should be more exciting than staring at a napkin. Reading my CV…”

Leave a Reply