Are you ready to take on bigger responsibilities in your retail job? Becoming a team leader is a great way to develop new skills, advance your career, and even earn a pay raise. To land that new role, you’ll need a great team leader CV.
Luckily, Resume.io is here to lead you to success. With dozens of CV examples and writing guides, we’re an expert resource for job seekers in all fields and at all levels of experience. Let’s help you make that upward move by proving you’re ready to take on new challenges.
This CV guide, along with the corresponding team leader CV example will cover the following topics:
- What does a team leader do?
- How to write a team leader CV (tips and tricks)
- The best layout for a team leader CV
- Advice on each section of your CV (summary, work history, education, skills)
- Professional CV layout and design hints.
What does a team leader do?
A team leader in a retail shop is tasked with helping to manage the other team members, handle customer service issues, delegate tasks, and work with management to complete sales and promotional events. Of course, your duties will vary depending on the shop.
Being promoted to team leader is often the first step for hourly associates who show promise for managerial positions. Landing a team leader job allows you to prove your leadership skills and ability to see the bigger picture. Team leads may work alongside other employees in the day-to-day functions of the store, but will be responsible for overseeing coworkers and answering questions.
How to write a team leader CV
The very first step in writing your team leader CV is understanding what sections to include. Your CV should contain the following elements:
- The CV header
- The CV summary (aka profile or personal statement)
- The employment history section
- The CV skills section
- The education section
You may be applying for a promotion from your current retail job to the team leader position in your store, or you may be applying for a team leader job as an outside candidate. It’s important to factor in this distinction when writing your CV. Since most team leaders are internal candidates, if you’re coming from another company, you’ll need to create a compelling argument as to why you have the right skills and experience to lead a new team to success.
In either case, it’s important to focus on numbers and concrete data that can show your effectiveness. Make sure to give examples of your work ethic and ability to motivate others. The overall goal is to show an employer what you can accomplish for them. The job description can help you figure out their overall priorities and the qualities they care about most in a team leader.
Don’t forget your CV header!
The header is the space at the top of your CV that calls attention to your name and contact information. In a practical sense, the header identifies your document and allows the hiring manager to quickly contact you for an interview. The header is also one of the few places you’ll get to be creative on your CV and can allow you to express your style. Make sure you align the header with the look and feel of the company you’re applying to.
Choosing the best CV format for a team leader
For a team leader position, we recommend the reverse chronological CV format as the best option. You’ve likely seen this style before as it can be considered the ‘standard’ structure that includes an employment history section where you can list previous positions. This approach is ideal for team leaders because you’ll need to have previous experience in retail to land this management stepping-stone position.
The reverse chronological structure is also the format preferred by both hiring managers and the automated CV scanners built into most online application portals. While other options like the functional and hybrid models exist, these are best suited for entry-level job-seekers or those in independent fields. You can read more about these options in our guide to CV formats.
Manage the ATS
Applicant Tracking Systems, called ATS , are a staple of modern hiring practices. These CV scanners are built into just about every online application portal companies use to recruit candidates, and they are especially prominent in the retail industry.
The ATS looks for keywords defined by the hiring manager, ranks CVs against each other, and passes only the top scoring onto the hiring manager for review. Here are a few steps you can take to minimise the risk of being filtered out:
- Read the job description closely and look for any duties, skills, or qualifications emphasised by the employer.
- Place these keywords in the appropriate sections of your CV, paying attention to the skills section and summary.
- Create a CV layout with common section titles like ‘Employment History’ so that the ATS knows where to look for information.
CV summary example
The summary of your team leader CV is the place to present yourself as the responsible, reliable leader the store manager is looking for. If you’re applying from outside the company, this will probably mean introducing yourself and highlighting your most relevant experiences.
If you’ve already worked as an associate and want to move up to team leader in the same store, you can use the summary to point out the reasons why you’re ready for this move, including any additional responsibilities you’ve taken on or results you’ve achieved. The goal of the summary is to encourage the hiring manager or store manager to continue reading the rest of your CV. See an adaptable CV example for a summary below.
Highly dynamic and effective Team Leader seeking to become an integral part of a growing retail company. Offering 8+ years of experience in senior retail positions. Demonstrating exceptional management skills and an affinity for leading teams to success.
Employment history sample
The employment history section is where you will list all work relevant to retail and to the team leader position. If you’re currently employed, this job will be first in the list. Next up, work backwards through all previous experience up until 10 years ago.
After creating subheadings with the job title, employer name, dates worked, and location, you can add 4-5 bullet points that capture your responsibilities. Make sure to vary the bullet points so that you can demonstrate a variety of skills throughout your career.
If you’re looking to make the jump into the team leader position, you’ll need to demonstrate the ways you went above and beyond your responsibilities as a retail employee. Use your bullet points to focus on the results you brought about for the company. Loyalty program sign-ups, sales, positive customer feedback, or an error-free cash register track record may all be sources of achievements for you to mention. See our adaptable CV sample below.
Team Leader at Everett & CO, London
April 2018 - August 2022
- Effectively led a multi-unit organisation with both sales and operational responsibilities.
- Served as a productive team leader, consistently exceeding sales and profit objectives.
- Worked to build and motivate a high performing team of 26 store associates.
- Participated in regional store meetings and conferences.
- Researched and implemented new strategies on how to increase sales and achieve company goals.
- Worked to resolve customer complaints in a timely and appropriate manner.
- Led the 2019-2020 Branch of the Year location.
Team Leader at Lola Rose, London
August 2014 - March 2018
- Worked closely with the Store Manager on the development of all marketing and merchandising programs in retail locations as well as online.
- Effectively managed, motivated, and inspired a team of 35 associates.
- Successfully oversaw various retail operations, resulting in smoother store processes.
- Contributed to the significant growth and success of Lola Rose, increasing sales by 25% between 2016-2018.
- Delegated assignments according to the strengths and preferences of associates.
- Arranged available resources, which allowed the team to complete responsibilities.
CV skills example
The skills section of your team leader CV may feel repetitive — after all, the whole document is about skills! However, there’s a certain way to use this section to your advantage.
This is one of the places where you can focus on employer keywords to make sure your CV passes the ATS. Use exact language from the job description to talk about any specific technical skills you have along with personality traits like leadership or time management needed for the team leader position.
The skills section is also a great place to call the hiring manager’s attention to your key selling points and the areas of expertise they shouldn’t miss when reading your CV. See how this is done on our CV sample below.
- Retail Operations
- Marketing and Sales
- Business Development Strategies
- Customer Service
- Project Management Skills
Team lead CV education example
The education section of your team leader CV is the place to share more about your background and goals with the hiring manager. Many retail employees are students or recent graduates so don’t be afraid to add a degree in progress to this section.
Make sure to list the degree name, school, location, and dates attended in reverse chronological order. You can also create bullet points under each degree in order to share any academic achievements or leadership positions that may be relevant to the team leader role. See our adaptable CV sample below.
Associate of Arts in Communications, University of East London, London
September 2012 - May 2014
CV layout and design
The layout and design of your CV needn’t be complicated. However, they are a great way to make yourself stand out as a professional and motivated applicant. Make sure you consider the look and feel of the company when choosing a design.
For example, a children’s clothing store would be more likely to appreciate a fun, coloured background, whereas an upscale furniture store may prefer a neutral, more elegant approach. If applying to multiple team leader positions, you may want to use different layouts for different applications. A professionally-designed CV template makes it easy to try out different styles.
After you’ve decided on the look of your CV, it’s important to pay attention to the balance of white space to text. While it can be tempting to cram in all relevant experience, leaving enough free space gives the readers’ eyes a break and allows them to absorb the information present. Make sure to use consistent font styles and sizes throughout your CV and proofread for spelling or grammar mistakes before you submit.
Key takeaways for a team leader CV
- A team leader position is a great stepping stone for those looking to build a career in retail, but you’ll need a stand-out CV to land the job.
- Adapt your CV to the employer’s needs and adjust your approach based on whether you’ve already worked in the store or are applying as an outside candidate.
- Look for numbers and concrete information that can be incorporated into the employment history bullet points to show your impact on the company's success.
- Get started creating a great layout with our adaptable team leader CV sample.