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Hobbies and Interests: Should I Include them in My CV?

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Hobbies and Interests: Should I Include them in My CV?

Sometimes the “Hobbies and Interests” section can be an important part of your resume. Candidates often include this section on their resume, but not everyone knows what to put in it. The basic rule of thumb is to list those hobbies and interests that are relevant to the position. For example, they may be related to social and community activities or help you demonstrate certain skills and competencies.

This will help the recruiter look at you from a different perspective and understand what kind of person you are in real life. This is why it is recommended to include hobbies on your resume – it’s a great way to stand out from the competition. Your hobbies allow the employer to know more about you, which increases the chances of a successful interview.

In this article Layboard answers all of your questions about this topic.

Should hobbies and interests be listed on my CV?

This question can be answered with both “yes” and “no.

On the one hand, having hobbies on your resume can play to your advantage, namely:

  1.  Help you show the employer your personality; in some cases, it becomes an added advantage.
  2.  Highlight valuable skills in the right industry.
  3.  Help you stand out from the crowd, especially in a highly competitive environment.

On the other hand, specifying a hobby can also have a negative result. Here are a few reasons why this happens:

  1. Often hobbies have nothing to do with the position you’re applying for, and employers may not be interested.
  2. Questionable or overly unusual hobbies can ruin your application and get you “out of the game” early.
  3. They take up valuable space on your resume that can be used for more important information, such as education and work experience.

So, the decision whether or not to put hobbies on your resume should be made on your own, based on your work experience, the position you are applying for, and your industry. The following are arguments to help you figure this out.

Examples of situations where hobbies and interests are not important

Depending on the specific circumstances, there are times when listing a hobby does not give a resume any advantage.

And some candidates are discouraged from listing hobbies on their resumes at all; these include:

1. Candidates with many years of professional experience

Let’s look at an example: You have 5-10 years of experience in IT project management and are looking for a high-paying job in Kuwait on a permanent basis. It makes no sense for you to specify your hobbies and interests. It is better to focus on describing your professional experience, successes, and accomplishments. Years of experience are your trump card and will make you stand out from the crowd.

2. If you have the most common hobbies and interests

Everything you write on your resume should add value. Hiking, watching movies, and socializing are great, but they won’t impress anyone on your resume. Plus, most candidates are likely to have the same interests. Personally, we haven’t heard of employers specifically looking for people who are interested in watching movies, have you?

When to include hobbies and interests in your resume

Now that you know when not to list hobbies on your resume, let’s figure out when it’s okay and even necessary. Take a look at the examples below:

3. Inexperienced candidates

Candidates who have little or no experience in the right field may find it difficult to list their abilities and skills. For example, if you are a student and are writing a resume for an internship search, you will have to make up for little work experience somehow. In such cases, it is helpful to list your hobbies and interests in more detail. Hobbies such as membership in a local sports club, community service, and volunteering with the Red Cross can help you demonstrate your leadership and teamwork skills.

2. Candidates who apply for leadership positions without professional management experience.

Usually, you need to have management experience for leadership positions. But a manager has to start somewhere, too. So if you do not have management experience in a professional environment, you can specify leadership skills acquired in another environment, such as team captain, chairman, or head of an organization.

3. Candidates whose hobbies are related to the desired job

If you have hobbies that relate directly to the field in which you want to work, be sure to include them – they are an added advantage. Usually, they attract the attention of employers and make you more likely to get a job. For example, mentioning web development as one of your hobbies and adding that you have a personal website is a great way to highlight your skills and passion for the field.

4. People changing professions

People who change careers have their own challenges. In this case, most often you do not have direct experience in the desired specialty, and this significantly reduces your chances of employment. However, if your hobbies are related to the field you want to work in, be sure to include them. This will show that you are motivated and have the right skills. For example, a lawyer who wants to do travel journalism is unlikely to get an invitation to an interview if his resume is all about law. However, if he adds a few words about his passion for writing and travel, his resume will be a better fit for the job, and the employers’ responses will not be long in coming.

Benefits of listing interests and hobbies on resumes

Employers hire people who will work for them. They invest their time and money in them. That’s why they are always looking for clues in resumes and cover letters that let them know more about candidates’ qualifications, skills, and interests. These three points help them decide if a person is right for the job or not.

Correctly listing hobbies on a resume offers the following benefits:

  1. Provides employers with additional information about you.
  2. Some hobbies help employers understand the kind of person you are outside of the office.
  3. It’s an easy, casual topic to strike up a conversation with a candidate at the beginning of an interview before “getting down to business.”
  4. Active hobbies, such as sports, show that you are healthy and in good physical shape.
  5. Involvement in charity and community work indicates excellent social skills.

The hobbies on your resume can tell you a lot about yourself. So make sure they are relevant to the field in which you want to work. Documenting your hobbies is an added advantage. If you need an example of a ready-made resume, there are plenty of free examples on the Internet!

Where should the “Interests and Hobbies” section be located?

The hobbies section is optional. If you put it at the top of your resume, the employer may think you don’t know how to prioritize. Your employer’s decision whether to hire you or not depends more on your education and work experience, so the hobbies section should be brief and not take up much space. There are times, though, when hobbies outweigh work experience. For example, if you recently graduated from university and want a job coaching high school soccer, listing a league you recently participated in or won would be a big plus.

In this article, we briefly and clearly explained whether you should put your hobbies and interests on your resume! We wish you success!

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