Yes, this is shameless self promotion, and yes, I would love to have you all read my latest post over at the Uncharted Waters blog titled “You Can Live Without a Resume!” I’m kidding of course. Not about wanting you to read the article, but about the shameless self promotion part. If I were really all about shameless self promotion, that’s all I would say, but you all know me better than that (or at least I hope so 😉 ).
When I say “Live without a Resume”, I do not mean live without any reference to you or what you do. What I mean is “spend less time on the resume and spend more time on visible, tangible aspects of your work and what you can do”.
If I were to try to convince someone I know my stuff about testing, and all I sent in was my resume, that may or may not get anyone’s attention. What I do know is that, if it doesn’t match their particular filtering criteria, it may never even get looked at. Personally, I don’t want to start a conversation from that position. Frankly, I don’t even want to have a conversation stemming from “hey, I looked over your resume, and…”
So what do I want to have happen? Personally, I’d prefer any of the following:
“Hey, I was looking over your LinkedIn profile and I noticed you had several talks posted. I listened to a couple of them, and I’m interested in talking more about what you said”
“I was looking at the Weekend Testing site, and I noticed your name listed on many of the sessions. I read a few, and hey, I think we might have something to discuss”
“I read several of your published articles. Could we get together and talk?”
“I spent an afternoon reading several posts from your blog. I think you’re insane, but you might be a good fit for a friend of mine’s company. Can I have them contact you?”
For the record, I have had every one of those things happen. No, this is not a way for me to strut and act cocky. Instead, it illustrates the power of having your work be on display in a way that steps outside of having a resume.
I owe this whole experiment to Seth Godin, and I’ve tried it now for almost five years. Granted, I could be proven wrong tomorrow. The bottom may fall out of the market, I could find myself unemployed, and then all of what I’m suggesting may not work any longer. That is of course possible. So far, though, Seth’s hypothesis has proven to be sound, and for that, I am seriously grateful :).