Last week, I attended a client meeting discussing the merits of candidates for a key position. At one point, the conversation turned to a current freelance contributor with whom they had developed a long relationship . The conversation went something like this:
Company Executive A: “What about bringing in Erin on this one? Her work is beautiful.”
Company Executive B: “We should think about the required progress on this project — we need to keep things moving along quickly.”
Company Executive C: “I really would like to see Erin here, but I worry about her ability to handle the schedule when the pressure heats up.”
Hmmmm. The information shared by Company Executive C was certainly never mentioned previously. This candidate had completed multiple projects with the company quite successfully. Her work was described as “inspired” — and she usually hit budget targets. However, it appeared that a portion of her “invisible” or “unwritten” resume was affecting her chances with the current opportunity.
This poses an interesting aspect of resumes.
It is likely that we all have an alternative or unwritten resume — which effectively captures what is not included in the more formal version. (See a great discussion of the topic in this classic HBR post.) This unwritten version, might include aspects of our work life including attitude, performance under pressure and our overall ability to collaborate.
We all have a side to our broader career story that we may be overlooking — and its elements may have a significant impact on our future. We need to ascertain the complete story and address it. The sooner the better.
So what do you think might be included in your “invisible resume”?
Time to think on that.