This post has been written by a member of the Debut Student Publisher Network. An exec position can give you just the CV boost you need. Beth Hurst tells you how to get one.
It’s election period at university, so it’s time to start thinking about applying for a committee or exec position. It might seem daunting at first, but there are so many skills that the experience can teach you. Being part of a society or club is great for your CV anyway, but if you feel ready to take on that extra bit of responsibility, here are 7 ways to grab that exec position you want!
Decide what society is right for you
This should be an obvious choice. If you’re part of an exec team for a year, you’ll be expected to spend a lot of time not just with the rest of the team, but with other members at various events. Make sure the society you choose is full of people you admire, coming together for a cause, activity, or subject that you love.
Decide what exec position you want to run for
In every committee there will be an exec position that could suit you. If you’re a natural leader, go for President, or Vice-President. If you’re super-organised, then you could excel as a secretary.
Don’t be afraid to go for the more challenging roles, such as organising shows, being team captain, or in charge of fundraising. Just because you haven’t done it before, it’s not a reason to back away. University is about challenging yourself, so just think about how amazing your CV will look with an incredible, but different job on there!
Make sure people know who you are
‘It’s not what you know but who you know’ is a problematic saying, but it applies here. The more that the previous exec know your face and other members get to know you, the more they’ll trust you can do the job at hand, so will vote. Throughout the year, get involved with all areas of the society that you can. So buy your bar crawl ticket, submit that meal pre-order, get down to dance class, become a volunteer, and get stuck in!
Ask for advice
It’s always a good idea to talk to the person in the exec position currently before you run. Get some knowledge, ask questions about the role, and maybe even find out their thoughts on your manifesto. They’ve done the job for a year and will know it inside out. Ask about what they’re proud of, and what they wish they’d have done differently. Think how you could improve on the work they’ve already done.
Write your manifesto
Either write your manifesto to post online for votes, or think about what you want to include in your speech. You’ll probably have limited space/only a few minutes to convince your society that you’re the best candidate. Split up your speech into sections, such as 1) why you want the exec position, 2) what you would aim to achieve 3) what skills you have to achieve this. New ideas are great, but don’t forget to acknowledge everything the society already does, and how you’d push it further.
The most important thing when applying for an exec position is feeling confident that you’d be great at the job. If you believe you can do it, then your certainty will come across in your manifesto or speech. Being on an committee is a massive commitment for the entire year, but if you’re sure it’s right for you, then go for it. Breathe deeply, speak clearly, and show everyone what you’re made of.
And if all else fails…
Even if you don’t get elected this year, remember that there are still many ways to get involved in the society, whether it’s by teaching a class, volunteering, or simply by taking part in events. Work hard, grow your CV, and remember there’s always next year!