Pulling together a Portfolio

There’s nothing more satisfying than going through all of your past projects and documents and pulling out the most exciting projects to show people. A portfolio is one of the best ways to showcase your skills to a potential employer. Here are my tips to help you stay focused during the process:

  • Develop a cohesive “brand” for yourself. Use templates and consistent fonts for your cover page, resume, cover letter, CV, and indexes. NB BrandDepending on your field of work, this may be more or less creative. All of my pages include this blue/green logo, complimentary formatting, and consistent fonts.
  • Now that you have a cohesive look and feel, your random mismatched documents will feel less haphazard, and seem more purposeful.
  • Go through your paper and digital files and pull out about twenty things you think are extra special and showcase your skills.
  • Re-read the job description.
  • Cull your portfolio items down. Make sure that each item speaks directly to an element in the job description.
  • Assemble your portfolio, including:
    • Extra copies of your resume and references.
    • An in-depth (and accurate) CV. This is where you can list any web-based portfolio items.
    • Make sure all the pages are organized into categories, stacks, page protectors, dividers – whatever makes the most sense.
    • Make sure all of the pages are tidy and you are using a clean portfolio (binder, duotang, etc)
  • Consider a digital portfolio, if applicable.
  • Show a friend or colleague ahead of time!

Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to think it through and assemble it. It should help you focus on your interview/job hunt, and refresh your memory of your favourite projects and tasks.

Am I missing any of your favourite tips?