Why won't a traditional resume work?
Very simple, because everybody is doing it. The purpose of your resumé is to land you an interview, and interviews are almost guaranteed to those who stand out. Everyone claims to be professional and passionate and driven, but we definitely can’t call 49 people for interviews. A traditional resumé may contain a statement such as this:
“I am a highly adaptable, motivated, fast learner with exceptional organizational skills.”
A hiring manager would wonder how anyone reading this could know whether you, in fact, are adaptable and a fast learner: “What’s your perception of adaptation and learning? Did it take you eight months to adapt to your environment and learn the ropes of your last job, and do you call that fast? That’s far too long in my book. We need someone who can learn the job in two months. Oh, and you say that you’ve got exceptional organizational skills. What’s so exceptional about them? What do you do from an organizing perspective that most people cannot do? Let me read the rest of your resumé to see if you’ve explained how. Oh wait, you haven’t. So now what? Are we just supposed to blindly trust you even though we’ve never met?”
Discover your impact
Your impact is how you influence others. This is truly a unique and surprisingly fun exercise, because you may be oblivious to how others perceive you. It is also an important aspect of your brand because its ultimate purpose is to attract others who are seeking the strengths and skills that you can offer to them.
You will, of course, have presumptions about what you think others see, or perhaps how you want others to see you too.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Why do people approach me?
- What are people seeking when they ask for my advice?
- How do I react when asked for help or advice?
- How do people feel when they are done talking to me?
Once again, expand on these questions to include these situations:
- When you had conflicts
- When you supported somebody
- When you actively helped others,
Whether you’re aware of it or not, you have an influence to the people around you. Each person has a unique aura that represents part of his or her brand. We encourage you to ask your friends and co‑workers the same questions. You may be surprised by the kinds of answers you receive. This is commonly referred to as 360‑degree feedback.
Ask intelligent questions
You will be presented with opportunities to ask questions during the course of the interview. You don’t have to wait until the end for the manager to ask you if you have any questions.
The questions you ask will depend on how well you pay attention to the discussion. In the initial part of the interview, the manager will exclusively direct the conversation based on his or her questions. You will be asked about yourself and your experience. At some point, the manager will start talking about the company and the position that you’re applying for. This is where your focus and attention goes into overdrive. Hang on every word this interviewer says and listen for clues as to where the focus and attention are being applied. Simultaneously, tap into your knowledge and expertise and ask questions during the manager’s explanation when appropriate. This is not an invitation to interrupt. Wait for the point to be finished before you humbly ask, “May I ask a question regarding that?”
With preparation, you can formulate a smart problem‑solving question in advance. Here is an example…