I just had my socks knocked off by someone’s “how I got my job” story.
I was at a social function, talking to a woman who had gotten a job (and then lost it via a mass lay off a few months later). She was someone I had just met, so she did not know that I work in the world of Human Resources and Career Development.
During our discussion she was reflecting on how excited she was to have gotten the job and, thus, how disappointed she was when she lost it. At one point I said:
I am sure you have a lot going for you. You got one job in this bad economy, and I bet you’ll get another.
To which she said:
I am going to try the same thing I did last time. I was so sick of sending out resumes that I came up with a ’10 reasons you should hire me’ letter and sent it off. It worked then, and maybe it will work again.
I don’t remember much of the rest of the conversation because I went into a fog.
This story is an important reminder: There is more than one way to get a job.
After learning more about the details of her situation, I can see how this approach may have “clicked” with that particular audience. The company was a start-up comprised of a few business partners who were looking to build a different type of company with a different group of employees.
As I’ve said before, be very mindful of your audience when determining how to best market yourself. For example, sending an infographic resume (and, heck, even listing hobbies) is usually not a good idea, BUT straying from the path might just help in certain situations. We have a long way to go before true new-school HR has become a part of the employment landscape. Until then, stick to the standards that make a great resume for most audiences.