What hobbies and interests should I include on my CV?
If an employer has already been unimpressed by the time they get to the Hobbies and Interests section, the information that you include at the end of your CV will not persuade them to change their mind about offering you an interview.
However, that doesn't mean the information included here is not important. A few brief words could catch the employer's eye and persuade them to take a second look through your skills and experience.
Add some personality
Conventional career advice has been to only include information directly relevant to the job in hand. However, modern day business practice often involves much more than employees simply going to the office every day, and many organisations - especially client-facing ones - seek as diverse a range of candidates as possible.
We've all heard of how some of the biggest business deals are completed during a round of golf, particularly in the worlds of accounting and law. Outside interests enable a potential employer to gain an understanding of what motivates you, what personal skills you may have and how you will integrate into the team. Look at how job advertisements stipulate certain personality traits required for positions. Identify what they are and how your hobbies can relate to their requirements.
If, for example, you are applying for a management trainee position but have never held a senior position in your work life, then the fact that you captained your football team, ran training sessions and led your side to the cup final will demonstrate your leadership and organisational ability.
The truth, the whole truth…
Avoid trying to portray yourself as some amazingly adventurous or gregarious individual because, to be blunt, most recruiters couldn't care less.
A little white lie here and there may seem innocent enough, but stating your love for the opera to try and make yourself sound more cultural could lead to problems if you're being interviewed by a big opera fan. You'll look stupid and untrustworthy if you don't know your Pavarottis from your Puccinis.