One of my favorite things I’ve ever heard Joshua say in the times I’ve had a chat with him is that “your resume is your obituary.”
When you consider the fact that your resume is really nothing more than a series of all the things you’ve accomplished in your PAST it really is an obituary. With the rise of social media the resume is going to die a rather quick and painful death and unlikely to ever lead you to your dream job. I’ve gone so far as to write at the end of each cover letter “my resume is not going to tell you as much about me as my blog, podcast, and online presence.”
There are many problems with resumes, but let’s start with the most obvious one. It’s a very limited representation of who you are. There is more to you than a piece of paper and bullets on a page. How can you possible take something as dynamic and interesting as a human being and capture that with one page? When you let people evaluate you based solely on that you’re really imposing limitations on finding great work.
I recently scored an interview with a company that was looking for an assistant content manager and they asked that people not send resumes but be creative and apply via twitter. Fortunately I had written a post on my blog about the search for a social media dream job and tweeted it as my application. In a matter of hours I had a reply via twitter letting me know they were interested in speaking with me. I knew from the application process alone that this was the kind of place I’d probably really enjoy working because I was being evaluated based on my personality as opposed to a bunch of bullets on a page.
Getting hired based on your personality has a much higher likelihood of leading to long term success than the accomplishments on your resume. People don’t often hire the most qualified candidates, but the ones they like the most.
A resume also doesn’t give you the opportunity to express your core values the way a blog can. If a potential employer spent some time digging through the content on my blog they would get quite a bit of insight into my core values. While this would probably rule out certain people from ever hiring me, it would also ensure the ones that would hire me identify with my values. It narrows down your pool of opportunities to the ones that are ideal for you.
Finally a resume doesn’t provide tangible evidence of your skills. A successful blog on the other hand can demonstrate great communication skills, initiative, creativity, and your ability to market yourself. Regardless of what field you are going into these are valuable assets for a potential employer.
When somebody is hiring for a social media job and says “send me your resume” I have a tendency to cringe because I know that my resume can’t possibly give a hiring manager the insights my blog and podcast could give them. So all I can say to the hiring managers of the world is simply this.
Don’t hire me based on my resume!
Srinivas Rao is the author of The Skool of Life where he writes about the things you should have learned in school but never did. He’s also the host-co founder of BlogcastFM, a podcast with over 200 interviews containing proven strategies to grow your blog.