Part Four: Empower your resume! A step-by-step guide for a feminist job application.

So you’ve come across the perfect role, and you’re getting started on your application. But somehow, what’s in your head isn’t translating to paper. Getting your application right and efficiently communicating your interest and candidacy for the role will help you stand out from the crowd. So how do you go about it?

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! We’ve pulled together a four-part series of top tips to guide you in writing an awesome (and feminist) job application!

Part Four: Tips to write the best ever bio

There are lots of times in life when you’ll be asked to submit a personal biography, like when applying for a board position or being profiled on an organisation website, and it can be tricky to get it right. This can be particularly true for women because society has conditioned women to be ‘humble’ and to be uncomfortable talking about ourselves and our achievements. Here are some tips to get you started:

The basics:

  1. Write in third person (unless specifically asked NOT to)
  2. This may be obvious, but remember to start with your name
  3. Know your audience and make it relevant to them
  4. Reference your current role or studies, and the organisation
  5. Stick to the word count

To make it next level:

  1. Share your values and how they inform your work and life choices. For example, is your work underpinned by an intersectional feminist worldview? Are you driven by the values of inclusion, equity and justice?
  2. Similarly, are there any empowered decisions you’re particularly proud of? Did you choose to study STEMM when you knew you’d be the only female in the class? Did you stand for an election as a young woman? This can be a great way to show how you boldly live your values.
  3. Shout your accomplishments! A good bio should include at least one professional accomplishment. A great bio can succinctly pull together several achievements, and this isn’t the time to be shy! Are you working on an exciting new project? Did you receive a study scholarship? Have you written a blog piece you’re particularly proud of?
  4. Share a little of who you are beyond the badass professional achievements (e.g. Tabitha writes from her home in Hobart which she shares with her two cats and extensive feminist book collection)
  5. Link to more information and examples of work. Chances are if someone is reading your bio they want to know more about you, so give the people what they want!

Final tip: We know writing about yourself can be a tricky task. If the words are not flowing, think about getting together with a friend or colleague and write each other’s bios.

To help inspire you in writing your own bio, here’s a few examples from our staff, Young Women’s Council and board members:

Molly is creative, curious and motivated. With a background in fine arts, she loves arts and culture, learning about food, and is constantly inspired by creativity within Australia’s youth arts and wider sector.

Molly works at SYN Media, currently as Media Learning Manager overseeing the social enterprise ‘SYN Media Learning’, and previously as Pathways Manager, supporting a community of over 500 young volunteers.

She’s the current Youth Representative at the Community Broadcasting Association of Australia (CBAA), and a 2019 Foundation for Young Australians (FYA) ‘Young Social Pioneer’ for her proposal to improve governance diversity and inclusion policies and practices.

Lauren is a passionate advocate for gender equality, the advancement of women and community strengthening. A University of South Australia alumni, Lauren was admitted to practice law in 2014 and in 2015 returned to her rural hometown in South Australia.

Lauren currently works for Instaclustr, a Canberra-based company and is proud to work entirely remotely whilst also studying her Master of Laws remotely through the College of Law.

Lauren grew up in a rural farming community so knows first-hand the challenges young women in rural and regional communities face in education and workforce participation, as well as the difficulties and obstacles experienced by young, professional working mothers. She firmly believes in supporting women to become their own best advocates to create the life they deserve and earn what they are worth.

Shay is a creative professional, podcaster, community advocate & media student, from regional South Australia, now based on Kaurna Land (Adelaide). She has worked as a community broadcaster at Radio Adelaide for 7+ years, & co-founded queer program ‘Pride & Prejudice’.

Shay is passionate about advocacy & education for chronic pain health issues endometriosis & PCOS as well as industrial issues for women in the workplace. She is a proud supporter of the ongoing campaign for the full decriminalisation of sex work. 

Shay enjoys following politics, comedy and true crime podcasts and some of her favourite feminists include Celeste Liddle, Janet Mock and Sofie Hagan.

Taylor is a qualified joiner, project manager and estimator from Queanbeyan, NSW. She was awarded the National Association of Women in Construction’s Tradeswomen of the Year in 2018 and has since spoken on many panels and in high schools about women’s leadership and diverse career pathways.

She enjoys deep sea diving and marine biology, jazz and hip-hop dancing, and has a passion for dogs safety, wellbeing and rights worldwide through her fundraising and awareness of the Soi Dog Foundation.

Her main goal is to spread awareness among school aged girls about the range of possibilities, skills and financial independence on offer in the construction and trade sector – and to save as many dogs and sharks as she can!

Dara is from Hobart, Tasmania and is currently studying a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Law. In 2019, Dara was a member of YWCA Australia’s delegation to the United Nations CSW63, an experience that ignited her passion for policy and civil-society advocacy, as well as fuelled her interest in economic justice.

As she expands her understanding of societal and political issues, she’s particularly inspired by celebrated social activists or writers such as Maya Angelou, Hannah Gadsby, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Bertrand Russel and Bob Brown.

When she’s not studying or working, Dara enjoys exploring her beautiful State with friends and family as well as working on puzzles and fantasizing about climate-change mitigation through affordable housing.

Revisit Parts One through Three of this series:

YWCA Australia wishes to acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the lands on which we work, live and play and pay our respects to Elders past and present. We recognise First Nations people as the custodians of the lands, seas and skies, with more than 60,000 years of wisdom, connection and relationship in caring for Country.

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