Back in March, after a long recruiting stretch, I wrote about re-engineering the resume. My attempt was to nudge people to rethink the way they present themselves, especially when looking for a new career opportunity. Seth Godin wrote about it too...and, as usual, explained it perfectly.
Job search, like any other marketing activity, takes one of three paths:
1. You're remarkable- sure to land you the best job with the best people. Or,
2. You're average- rarely gets you noticed, almost never lands you an interview for the job you really want and makes you forgettable if you happen to get past initial screening. Or,
3. You're lucky- what you need copious amounts of if you're average.
Notwithstanding it's almost certain outcome, most people don't choose remarkable...because it's too hard. It requires too much time, too much thought, too much risk, too much energy, too much money...just too much. Contrarily, most people are willing to gamble by doing the easy, average thing, the thing that feels safe and then hope (and pray) for the best outcome.
Jeff Widman is clearly not average. I've never met him. Chances are, you haven't either. Good news, you don't need to...take a quick look at his website and handy work and you'll understand his brand almost immediately. He's a thinker, and a thought provoker. He's imaginative, humble and passionate. He knows exactly what he wants, understands what it takes to get there and works hard at it. And, best of all, he gets results. Interestingly, I learned all this without a resume, no boring intro letter, no phone interview and no reference checks. Just a quick e-mail thanking me for my post and inviting me to take a closer look. That's marketing. Great content, personally delivered in a meaningful way. I learned more about Jeff with a few clicks than I could have with a folder full of paperwork.
Jeff's last job application took fifty hours to develop...that in itself is remarkable. If you're looking for inspiration, I recommend you contact Jeff. Personally, I hope I get the chance to meet him someday.