Resume Down, Blog Up

I saw the feed headline from Bob Warfield, who referenced Zoli Erdos, who in turn quoted Seth Godin – all to the effect that the resume is not only useless but counterproductive. As I said last month, your blog is both your resume and your job search.

Not satisfied with stopping there, I later said that employees should blog at work, and employers would be smart to encourage this and harness its power for their own marketing ends.

The classic job search and the classic resume are both hopeless for matching the right people up with the right environment. Web 2.0 does it all a whole lot better.
I took this idea in the first place from Zoli Erdos, and he took it from Tom Peters of a decade ago.

The idea of self promotion has been around for a long time now, and any employee can tell you that the system of trusting employers to spot your good talents, and also to retain you through downturns, takes more faith than most can muster nowadays.

So everyone’s agreed there’s a better way of doing things now. But if you feel stuck in the resume trap, try spicing your latest resume up with a second page of samples from your blog. If you don’t have a blog get one. Remember, it’s never too late to start, and there’s always room at the top.

Let me know the results :)

5 thoughts on “Resume Down, Blog Up

  1. I know some pretty good coders who are simply not up to write a blog.
    I think not everyone can blog. Not everyone’s blog will change the would-be employers opinion in the positive direction by including a few posts on the resume.

    Please, it!s it turning into a silver bullet thing.
    Trying to throw a blog at every problem, for everyone, will not work.

    JuSt my humble opinion.

  2. >Trying to throw a blog at every problem, for everyone, will not work.

    Roland thanks for the opinion – that’s a great point about the silver bullet.

    But underlying this whole thing is the culture of employment, and this is changing also. Employers know that resumes have long been suspect, which is why people do background checks.

    When I hire I’m far less concerned with what someone has done, and much more concerned with what they’re exactly capable of at this moment, in terms of performing. Resume doesn’t quite tell me this, cover letter might, and the blog really does show the authentic energy of a person.

    The point has always been true that the job seeker has to find ways to stand out to a company. You can do this by making it up at the time of applying, writing the cover letter and reworking the old resume again.

    But it saves time to be prepared, and with a blog (or copies of comments you’ve made, or forum discussions you’ve been in, or collaboration memos or papers you’ve written) you can have some materials already arranged to show who you are.

    And it’s about ambition. Seth’s point was if you’re trying to stand out as someone special (not everyone is, or needs to), a resume won’t do it.

    Ross Hunter

  3. Yes, I know it’s changing.
    In one, small part of the world – US, UK.

    The rest of us, unfortunately have to do without the blog part and the help of the net more or less.

    “and the blog really does show the authentic energy of a person.”

    I would argue with that. There are times in life – like my whole last autumn – when one is full of authentic energy, literally bristling with it, but, as it is, his job consumes it all and his blog is kept low, no posts, nothing. Seems dead almost.

    I just wrote a whole post on it, where yes, I do agree, standing out takes more than a resume – I know it too well, I am awful with resumes -, all I argue is the blog part.

    The rest of Seth’s post – projects to see, touch, smell, recommendations, personal fame, etc. – is ages old, it always worked, the new angle what I don’t see yet is the “you must have a blog” part.
    Some people should not. They are funny, sparkling people, they can talk with passion, but you give them a keyboard, a camera or a mic to talk to and they die.

    “And it’s about ambition. Seth’s point was if you’re trying to stand out as someone special (not everyone is, or needs to), a resume won’t do i”

    All I say is that the “uniformization of the revolution” will result in average Joes.
    Do a blog if you feel like it and can do it well and like it.
    Don’t do it ’cause it’s a must, for then a blog will be a new type of uniform wear, almost the same as the current resume.

    Roland Hesz

  4. Roland you’re making some great points :)

    But don’t forget that part where I said the blog is not just your resume it’s your job search. And that’s the other part that’s been around forever, is networking. A blog is just so useful for meeting people. Look at the friends you’re making now.

    And don’t forget that initiative counts for a lot and just by communicating you show you can work in teams, which the last time I looked is how software is created.

    And having said that, a discussion forum was always a great place for making friends long before the blog came around, and still is. Although a LOT of people prefer to read the on-topic discussions that happen in blog posts now. The older systems (job board) are making room for the new systems (LinkedIn) is all that’s happening. The principles of achievement are still the same I think.

    I just read your post on this by the way, and I think the fact that it’s not “there” in E. Europe yet is the best reason for getting started with it. Might as well be leading edge, right? Then when it gets popular you have the high ground already.

    I think the thing with blogging is to get OUT of the idea that it’s for personal nonsense, and treat it as if everything you post will be visible for the rest of your life, and you’ll be called to account for it. In other words, treat it as a marketing vehicle for yourself.

    And if you’re not good at that, invite friends to share the blog with you; invite people to help you show your best side, put up Slideshare presentations, embed candid videos of you programming, show some code samples or some architecture – take whatever is the cream of your production, and showcase it.


  5. I am totally with you in general – well, I have a blog, and that’s not a personal one mostly -, and agree on the whole importance of the “self branding” be it through blogs, twitter, linkedin, pub evening with CEOs, attending University events, basically being among people.

    For me it’s easy, I mean my first reason to come to the internet in the early 90s was to get in touch with people.

    “show some code samples or some architecture – take whatever is the cream of your production, and showcase it.”

    That is where it gets tricky, and I think that’s where people should be, well, cautious.
    Putting up code and architecture thing is good, and gives a chance for people to see what you created, at the same time can get you in trouble if your employer decides that should not have been shown.
    Yes, I am all for it, do it, show it, just use common sense – one of the reasons you don’t see anything like that on my blog is that I used common sense, and was overly cautious.
    You can do it wrong in different ways, I did it wrong by playing safe.
    Some people do it wrong by ending up without a job.

    But I am definitely in the process of reworking my blog, and my blogging habits.

    And as I said. Basically I agree with you, just wanted to raise up a few points that I think are important.