Of square pegs in round holes…

Am helping a client out with interviews for a CEO position at their startup.

Resumes! And LinkedIn! You sometimes miss the days of cover letters and old-school resumes – today it is a job posting on LinkedIn and people applying with a click – often not even reading the requirements for the role.

My first resume I made in the year 2000 – when I passed out of Engineering and fell into Recession. I used this site – https://rockportinstitute.com/resources/how-to-write-a-masterpiece-of-a-resume/ to design a resume that didn’t have my father’s name and the silly disclaimer (I hereby certify blah blah). The internet was new in those days and unlike now, there were not many sites (if any) that had tips on writing a great resume. I didn’t get a fantastic job though (courtesy the Dotcom crash) but I ended up being the go-to person for resume writing!

Anyways, back to the present. I still get resumes with father’s names and hobbies that spell – listening to music and surfing the internet, and that disclaimer. But I also get some well-written, to-the-point pieces of introduction that do not oversell themselves, and yet end up being impressive. Subtlety counts!

Now, a resume is a document. You cannot hire, or even shortlist well, based on a document (unless it is for content writing). That’s where interviews come in, and that is where a lot of the candidates end up short.

In most cases, it is due to the “poetic liberty” that they take while writing an ode to their capabilities. Job advertised for – consultant. Check. Required years of experience – check. Specific domain experience – check. Great! But when interviewed, the story is something else.

Some candidates do not even prepare – no googling the company or the people who are interviewing them, no reading up on the domain of expertise required, some aren’t even aware of the company they applied to. It takes just a click to apply, and a word to disappoint.

And so one has to sift through hundreds of potentials, and speak with dozens of candidates – quite an inefficient process isn’t it? Let’s see if there is a startup out there planning to disrupt the hiring process, meaningfully.

Anyways, as a job applicant, one has to match oneself and one’s skills with the position. It is no use being a square peg in a round hole – just a waste of everyone’s time. More than the company, it is important for you as an applicant – it’s your career trajectory – the company can find replacements, but your resume ends up looking a mile long, with tenures in months rather in years.

Speaking of employment, I did see an image the other day on “Employment as a service”. Base salary of 20k, with add ons – 2k for 200 calls, 50 emails and 10 meetings, 8k for 300 calls, 50 meetings etc. Don’t know if it was tongue-in-cheek or real, but you never know. Can be possible, and a radical concept, especially in roles where team-building and motivation aren’t that big a factor. More back-office/commission-based jobs maybe?

Nevertheless, that model is still a bit far away. For now, it’s about matching. Seeing if the employer fits the employee, and vice-versa. Be patient, and don’t take just about anybody. And don’t sign up with just about any company. Do your research, and ensure the fit is right.

I hope I find some good fits soon!

See you tomorrow:)