How to do a Video Resume – Your 3 minutes to shine

How about extending your application to another channel? A video resume is a great chance to stand out and not only show your skills, but also your personality. Especially in modern times, it’s a no-brainer to use the possibilities technology & the web offers for getting the job you want.  A paper or electronic CV (PDF or form), of course, is still required by almost every sports company. However, it’s a one dimensional medium and limits your communication to the written word and a little design to express your character. A moving video, on the other hand, adds depth to your profile. Use it to introduce yourself, your communication skills, your confidence, maybe even your humour – precious soft skills that a lot of jobs ask for.

It might take some time to prepare it, film it and edit it. But: Your effort will definitely pay off for your job search!

If you want to give it a try: This is how to make a video resume.

The technology

What do you need for a video resumé?

First, you’ll need a video camera with a good resolution, 1080px or more. You don’t want to send out a blurry video of yourself which distorts your face (in rare cases it might improve the situation, but don’t count yourself as one of them).  New smartphones and notebooks actually do great videos, so you could even use this. Just check the settings and adjustment before, so you film it in high quality. If you own a camcorder or can borrow one from a friend, this might be easier. Nowadays, most of them have a turnable screen, so you can watch yourself while filming. To get a steady picture, please use a tripod.

After filming, you will need an editing program for your Notebook. To keep it easy, you’ll probably need it mostly for cropping the video, so Windows Movie Maker or iMovie suffice.

Since the file will be BIG, you can’t just send it over via e-mail. The best way is actually to upload it to a video portal, Youtube for example, and add the video link to your application. Watch your username though – an application for a sport management job by user “ifarted69” might not be taken seriously.

Here’s an example by Laura Harris who does a great job in introducing herself in only 2 minutes:


Dress up accordingly to the job you want to apply for

Pay attention to all the factors that you are also considering when having a real job interview – neat clothing and a good overall impression. Suit up for the company profile and the job. This could be formal or sporty, depending on the position. Just dress like you would when you show up for work.

Wrinkles? No worries!

Who is concerned regarding discrimination – no worries, there has been a conference of the commission of employment law in 2010, with the outcome that video resumes have to be judged by the same, objective criteria as the written ones. That means you won’t have any trouble with your holiday pounds or grey hair.


The setting

Try to choose a nice setting, no matter if just a white wall or sandy beaches – everything is possible. A friend of mine once had a video interview in front of her window in the alps with snow covered mountains behind her. That definitely left an impression! Most suitable is a background that matches your personality and somehow sparks interest in watching your video. In any case try to avoid recording other people and better don’t do your clip outside, unless you find a quiet place with good light.

The content

When it comes to the content of your speech you really need to kick ass in these few seconds to get your dream management or marketing sportjob. This is going to be tough. To be honest, I tried endless times to make the perfect video. In the end I had to accept that there is none.  Still, no one is flawless and your video will still be able to impress when done right. So, according to my own tests, here’s some hints what to look out for:

Make a plan

Let’s start! And stop! After 10 “ehm” in the first 30 seconds, because I wasn’t sure what to say, I can tell you: Starting to talk without any plan does not work. Unless you’re a natural free speaker, then just go ahead! Work out a script, a red thread to follow.  Your video won’t convince anyone if you stutter or jump from one topic to the next and back.

Keep it short

Now fully planned, my agenda tells me step by step what to do: Introduction – Why I am brilliant – Why I am the perfect employee for this sport job. After 10 minutes of recording, I am still talking about my former experiences. That’s too long. Set a time for the whole interview and each part. Less than 3 minutes will suffice to shine, believe me. The video is supposed to give the company a glimpse of who you are and make them curious enough that they want to get to know you. It’s similar to a good presentation: Keep a clock in hand sight and decide how much time you want to use for each topic – this way, you won’t loose track.

Control your body language

Shortened my agenda and introduced myself in 2 minutes and 57 seconds, yay! Unfortunately, whilst watching my results, I am noticing that my eyes wander around the room, and after 1 minute I get a little too comfortable in my seat. Oops. Also, I am horribly waving my arms at 2:23! What am I doing?!
A lot of people that try to be convincing are flailing horribly with their arms. There is no problem about that if you are having a face to face conversation, but if you only have a small display window to present yourself, it is better to be a bit reserved. Otherwise your video resume could end up as a YouTube-Hit (Epic Fail Category).
Also, sit straight and smile, that shows confidence, you can even lean in a little – and look into the camera. When your future employer watches the video, it will seem as if you keep eye contact. That’s great!

Retry until it’s perfect

I wish I could present you the perfect video resume, but as it was raining, too dark, I couldn’t find the words – well, it just wouldn’t work out today. But that is the best thing about this kind of job interviews:

You can try and try and try…

Taken as a whole, generating a video CV doesn’t sound that complicated. Everyone is able to mumble for about 2 minutes into his webcam. Not having to rack your brains about phrases for your sportjob cover letter is nice as well. But unfortunately, it is not that easy.  Keep in mind that the situation is similar to a real job interview, your potential job employer virtually sits right in front you. Following this tips, take your time and put in a little effort to make a creative video resume. Good luck!

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