How (not) to use the resume

The resume is getting a bit of a kicking these days with "experts" shooting it down, wondering about its future and even claiming to have replaced it with something new (which when seen looks remarkably like a resume).

It's all for attention.

Today I read Ask the Headhunter, Nick Corcodilos's blog, titled "How not to use the resume." I posted a comment and thought I'd share my opinion with my readers as well. Nick urges job-hunters to skip the resume as a first-contact tactic and go straight to the hiring manager for a verbal introduction, which is then followed up with the written resume.

First of all, Nick's audience is mainly American and mainly senior corporate types. There is a subtle difference between American and Canadian communication styles. Our American cousins are a touch more forthright, a wee bit bolder with an extra dash of brashness. Canadians are perhaps too hesitant, a wee bit too cautious with a dash of humility. That's my opinion from experience working with clients from both sides of the 49th parallel.

And senior leaders have developed, generally speaking, an ability to network as well as an existing network. This comes from years of conferences, courses, leadership training and more.

Canadian HR departments are not so impressed by job hunters who step on their toes getting to the hiring manager. CAO's tend to be less impressed by those who go directly to them, even if to only have a conversation about an opening or a potential opening. I've seen it happen.

Right or wrong, that's simply what I have observed.

The resume is not dead, it's not going away any time soon, and it can be effective. After all, my clients reliably land interviews! Many for that seemingly impossible "dream job," and many for the kind of work they were after. Those who don't land interviews have particular obstacles - a criminal record for example. And others take a bit longer in a saturated market or economic downturn. Even then, there are extra steps that can be taken that don't step on HR's sensitive toes!

Curious about Mr. Corcodilos's blog post? Read it here: Nick Corcodilos's article.

I don't necessarily disagree with the article given the audience it targets, but wanted to provide non-senior leaders and those outside the U.S. another perspective.

- creating masterful resumes for your career's success, Stephanie