Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Be A Hammer

Great link from Lifehacker today on how to apply for a job. It is really a link from craigslist. But I have to credit where I first saw it. Good article on resume and cover letter writing and a general approach. This is relevant to diligentia because I am going through a change of life or midlife crisis of sorts. Perspective is relative. Trying to determine what I want to be when I grow up, etc.

Had a great conversation with Harry aka Marketing Headhunter last week. He is sherpa-ing me through the "who am I" part of the journey. I've been doing a jack of all trades, master of none kind of thing for awhile. I have a varied array of skills sets. The problem is that when I start talking about them or putting them down on paper in the format of a resume, it comes out as noise.

And I am really just starting to wake up to that fact. I'm learning that a lot of people doing the hiring (of personnel or outsource vendors) don't really know what they are doing or dont have the time or dont think they have the time. They have a list of criteria worded in a very specific way and they set about trying to find someone that matches that criteria perfectly. They have a box of a certain size and they try to fit you in that box. If you don't fit, you're done. Discarded. Removed from the deck. It does NOT matter if you can fit in 10 different kinds of boxes.

Harry's advice. Be a hammer. Solve a specific problem for a specific market.

YOU have to be the one to control the box. So HELP these decision makers. Don't be a screwdriver when they need a hammer. Be a hammer when they need a hammer. The craigslist posting talks to all of this. Be specific. Tailor your responses.

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Max said...

It's a great article with a great message--the world is full of generalists who can do most anything fairly well, and lacks specialists who can do one thing (to steal a page from Steve Jobs) insanely great.

Of course, the trick is to be able to do TWO things--your insanely great thing, and learning a new specialty, lest you specialize yourself out of existence in a dynamic market...

-Max Leibman