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Written by Charlotte GraingerCharlotte Grainger

CEO CV Examples & UK Templates

Landing your next dream job starts with a well-pitched CV. As a business leader, chances are you have a lot to say about your experience. Read our guide on how to write a CEO CV that tells your professional story so far.
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CEO CV Examples & UK Templates
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You’ve made it. After years of climbing and hustling, you’re at the top of the career ladder. You’re the big cheese, the head honcho, the star of the show. So, what happens when you want to shift gears and start something new? Writing a CEO CV is the starting point. 

Here at Resume.io, we have everything you need to support your career journey. We provide expert-backed writing guides along with a vast library of CV examples to help you along the way. In the following writing guide — and CEO CV sample — we will cover: 

  • What a CEO does on a daily basis
  • How to write a CEO CV and what sections to include
  • The best format to use when writing a CEO CV
  • Tips on what to write in each of the sections
  • Design and layout advice to help your CV stand out

What does a CEO do?

The Chief Executive Officer, or the CEO, is the head of any business. This is the highest position you can reach when climbing the career ladder. You manage all of the business operations and lead them toward success. That’s the broad definition. However, if you reach the highest heights and become a CEO, you may find yourself tasked with: 

  • Creating quarterly strategies to move the company forward
  • Liaising with the other executive-level managers
  • Seeking out new ways to drive profitability across the board
  • Organising the company structure and adapting accordingly
  • Speaking on behalf of the business at events and talks
  • Directing agendas and delegating tasks, as needed
Statistical insight

How do CEOs spend their time?

The short answer is that they take a whole load of meetings. One study from the Harvard Business Review found that a massive 72% of CEOs’ work time was spent in meetings with staff members. The remaining 38% was spent alone, likely strategising.

Of course, no two CEO roles are the same. What you do on a daily basis will largely depend on the company, how you manage your time, and the sector in which you work. For that reason, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to this top-level job position. 

What’s more, it’s worth noting that there are countless routes that can lead you to this position. Some CEOs are also the business’ founders, meaning that they built the company from the ground up. However, others are promoted to the position or buy out the business.

Statistical insight

How much do CEOs make?

Contrary to popular belief, not all CEOs are millionaires. According to Payscale, the average base salary for this role in the United Kingdom is £74,135. 

There’s a massive range of salaries for this role, between £36,000 and £198,000. Plus, the success of your bank account rests on the success of the business. 

How to write a CEO CV

Writing a CEO CV is a tall order. To make it to this prime position, you will have years of industry experience. You might have an impressive list of qualifications or a scrappy back story about how you turned a startup into a success. Either way, that’s a whole lot to cram into a single document. What you need is a solid structure. Your CV should include 

  • The CV header
  • The CV summary (aka profile or personal statement)
  • The employment history section
  • The CV skills section
  • The education section

By including each of the above sections, you can ensure that you give the hiring manager all of the information that they need. We will take you through the steps of what to include in each of these sections shortly. You can get more details in our CV writing guide here.

Using keywords throughout your application can help you get ahead of the pack. Many modern-day recruiters use Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). The software ranks incoming applications by how well they fit the original job criteria. They do this using a sophisticated keyword-ranking system — much like Google’s SEO ranking. To give yourself the best chance of success, pick out keywords from the advert and use them. 

Choosing the best CV format for a CEO

Most of the time, job seekers use a reverse chronological format for their CV. However, this approach works best when you’ve had a linear career so far. As a CEO, you may well have ditched the traditional route to success, instead taking risks along the way. 

For that reason, you may want to pick a CV format that best showcases your talents. For example, the functional structure allows you to shine the spotlight on what you bring to the figurative table, rather than the positions you’ve held. If you’ve only ever worked with the same business or a company you built, you may find that this approach works for you. 

Are you left scratching your head? We have all of the extra information you need in our full formatting guide.

Do you want some more inspiration? We’ve got you covered. Take a quick look at some of our related CV examples below: 

Make sure you tailor your CV to the company at hand. Since you are pitching for the “top dog” role, the hiring manager will expect you to have a deep knowledge of the business. Figure out what the company needs in the years to come — you can look at the company vision or any pledges that have been made — and make sure your CV matches that.

CV header

The header of your CV sits at the top of the page. It includes basic information about you: your name, your job title, your contact information, and your location. While it’s hardly the most exciting part of the document, it plays a vital role. You need to ensure that all of these details are placed front and centre. Don’t make the reader’s job harder than it should be! 

CV summary example

If you want to hook the reader’s attention, writing a CV summary that packs a punch is the answer. This is the most freeform part of the application, consisting of three to five lines. Since you don’t have many words to play around with, be sure to pick them carefully. Your summary should have an air of authority and showcase your greatest career accolades. 

Focus not only on what you have achieved but what that has meant for companies. For example, you may want to zoom in on how you increased the profits at your last company or the way you grew a fledgling business. Be specific about what your efforts resulted in.

Adaptable summary CV sample

Seasoned CEO and entrepreneur with a passion for leading start-ups and taking established companies to the next level. Proven talent for shaping multiyear business strategies to create the foundation for long-term, sustainable profit growth. Partner with board members, investors, advisors, and other stakeholders to align vision with market opportunities whist mitigating risks. 

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Employment history sample

Within the employment history section, you should share any positions you’ve previously held. As a CEO, you may be running multiple companies at the same time. That’s okay. You can include your top positions in this section, even if they are ongoing. 

You can use the reverse chronological order to list your previous roles. Include the company name, your position, the location, and the dates you were active. Beneath that, you can use a bullet point list to highlight both your duties and the results you achieved. 

Adaptable employment history CV example

CEO, ACTech, London, UK
June 2018 - Present

  • Engage with investors, C-suite, and board members to create high-impact strategy to position start-up tech company for fast growth.
  • Lead a team of executives and senior managers in building high-performing departments across all areas of the company.
  • Evaluate new opportunities in collaboration with CFO, CTO, and CPO for presentation to investors.
  • Cultivate relationships with potential partners to extend ACTech's market reach and penetrate new industries.

 

Managing Director, Prudential Insurance, London, UK
August 2012 - June 2018

  • Steered business operations to maintain alignment with corporate objectives and meet performance targets.
  • Managed a team of 15 direct and 250 indirect reports across three divisions and eight departments.
  • Held overall accountability for P&L, budgeting, operating and labour costs, and cash flow management.
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CEO CV education example 

If you’ve created a million-pound company, recruiters are hardly going to care which school you went to. However, since including an education section is standard, you shouldn’t skip this part of the process. You can use roughly the same format you used for the employment section. List the name of the institute, the qualification, the grade you got, and the years. As a bonus, you can also include any relevant details about the course. 

Adaptable education CV example

Master of Business Administration, University of London, London, UK
September 2014 - June 2016 

Bachelor of Arts in Economics, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK
September 2008 - June 2012

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CV skills example

Your experience may speak for itself, but what skills have you learnt along the way? Including the right set of talents on your CV is vital to your success. Since you’re in the highest position, you should have a good range of CV skills. Don’t stick to one-word points here. You can use a long-form structure to describe what you bring to the table, such as

  • Financial planning and strategising ahead of each quarter
  • Increasing business revenue by more than 33%
  • Presenting at business conferences and delivering company vision
  • High-level operations management and delegation

Don’t be afraid to toot your own horn here. If you are unsure where to start when it comes to your skills section, take a look at our CEO CV sample for some guidance.

Adaptable skills section CV example
  • Leadership
  • P&L Ownership
  • Revenue Growth
  • Board Reporting
  • Strategy Development
  • Business Management
  • Reorganisation
  • Start-up Environments
  • Innovation
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CV layout and design

While there’s nothing wrong with adding some creative flair to your CV, you don’t want to go overboard. Keep the design simple so that the reader can quickly identify your strengths. Make sure that there is adequate space between each section. That will help increase the readability of the document. You may also want to add a couple of strong, power colours, such as blue or red, into the mix. If you want to take all of the hassle out of designing this document, use one of our field-tested CV templates.

Key takeaways for a CEO CV

  1. If you’re a high-flying CEO, you will have a lot to say on your CV. Keeping it concise and “to the point” is the key to your success.
  2. Be specific about what results you have achieved for each company.
  3. Make sure you target your application and use appropriate keywords throughout it.
  4. If in doubt, use one of our CV templates to help you design your application.
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