Going Beyond Resumes

Showing Your Creative Growth From Your Learning & Development

Seven Ways To Show Skills Without Experience On A Resume
Learn how to stand out from the crowd with help from seven members of the Forbes Human Resources Council.
  1. Demonstrate A History Of Learning

No one is born with work experience. Everything must be learned, and passion and desire can be more valuable than knowledge. Those entering a new field should provide any previous work or academic experience that shows their willingness and ability to learn. Anyone not happy in their career should be free to make a change, but there should be a history of progressive learning and achievement. – John Feldmann, Insperity

Yet what’s amazing about this statement is that there is no place to show this informal learning on a resume, yet it’s obviously an integral part of The Future of Work. Again we need something that goes beyond the limited structure and layout of a resume. Even more, we can’t separate out learning from working, as the two are often entwined. So seeing the larger context of your life which shows how your work and learning choices entwine with it.

That said though, I think that proving that you know what you’re learning is essential though and I think your blog or site is a perfect way to do this. The problem with most blogs though is that this knowledge is often spread out over many posts. So you need something like a page that summarizes the essence of this knowledge but then links to posts that relate to it as references.

  1. Connect The Dots

Stand out as a candidate entering the workforce or transitioning careers by connecting to the challenges the company is trying to solve. Do your research via LinkedIn, social media, Glassdoor and news reports. Demonstrate your knowledge/insights. You can also build relevant experience via projects and pro bono work that is more in line with the position you seek. – Sara Whitman, Peppercomm

Please tell me what company is trying to solve reinventing the resume? Please tell me which company is trying to solve how we can integrate vertical development into society to help transform it?

No one is tackling these things because they’re seen more as social issues rather than business issues. And yet they directly influence and affect the business world, as they could release the untapped potential of billions of people and create such a surge of productivity and growth the world has never seen before.

But ya, the only thing I can do is create a project section to my website and show the progressive essence of what I’m learning from this research.

  1. Be Creative, Dare To Be Different

Before I transitioned into HR, I was in marketing and held a degree in marketing. I put my creative hat on and showed similarities between marketing and human resources and how having such a background can be beneficial to the department. I recommend to highlight key things on your resume that you currently possess that will allow for an easy transition. Charece Newell, MSILR, SHRBP, Sunspire Health

The words “Be Creative” really resonate with my Be Real Creative mantra. And showing how MMORPGs are a metaphor for The Future of Work, as they both require “guild-like” communities of practice for “levelling up” via vertical development, is pretty much as far out there creatively speaking as you can get, without being seen as completely crazy.

All said and done, the more I see articles like this though, the more it seems like if you’re going to do your own research, learning, and development on something so groundbreakingly new and can actually monetize your “exploration” in some way, why would you ever want to work for a company again at all?

That to me is pretty much The Future of Work I envision the world is moving to, with the conventional concept of an organization eventually going extinct, because they’re not undergoing this same radical playing (aka research) and learning as individuals are. In their place will arise new types of organizations, much more fluid and directly supporting the growth and development of their members much more so than conventional organizations could ever conceive of doing.

Going Beyond Resumes

Showing the Larger Arc of Your Life

How to Write a Career Change Resume (Guide, Templates, & Examples) – Jobscan
Thinking about switching careers? Here’s how to write a career change resume that highlights your strengths and transferrable skills. (+ Free templates!)

In thinking about how recruiters don’t seem interested in understanding the larger context of your life and why you’re making a career change (as there’s no place to show this on a resume), I wanted to know if there was a way to write a resume to actually show this. In doing so, I found the above article.

Writing, in this example, is a transferable skill. Transferable skills include both hard skills and soft skills, like leadership, time management, multi-tasking, communication, organization, emotional intelligence, listening, research, and many more.

Pro Tip: Include these skills in your work experience section, focusing less on duties and more on the skills you have developed, as these will be of the most interest to the hiring manager. 

  1. Write a resume objective or summary that frames your career change as a strength

Your resume objective or resume summary sections are a great way to convince recruiters that your past experience sets you up as the perfect candidate for the new role. These statements tie in your experience and skills with what your new career demands.

When writing your resume objective, focus on the skills that you’ve picked up throughout your current career and other previous roles and explain how you plan to use them in this new industry.

This last quote is somewhat hilarious because it’s effectively what I’m trying to do with my life as a whole. I’m trying to show how my time building communities of practice (guilds, clans) to help people level up within the imaginary worlds of video games is utilizing similar personal and organizational skills that are needed to create communities of practice to help people to “level up” in life (i.e. vertical development).

It kind of mirrors how John Seely Brown has shown how there is massive innovation occurring within World of Warcraft communities but because they’re gaming communities, people in the business world are completely obviously to it (and probably don’t see it as relatable or transferrable to the world of work).

Going Beyond Resumes

The Conventional Work World Doesn’t Like Change

Recruiters HATE the Functional Resume Format—Do This Instead
Stop using the functional resume format to cover up parts of your resume. Instead, learn what recruiters suggest in this article.

I was thinking about redoing my resume and decided to do some research on functional resumes rather than the typical chronological resumes, as they’re supposed to be better for career changes. In the process, I found this article indicating that functional resumes are not liked very much because they give the feeling that you’re trying to hide something. Instead, they recommended a hybrid (or combination) resume.

In thinking about this though, I realized that there are probably a ton of people creating these types of resumes right now because so many people are fed up up with not just their job but the entire industry they’re working within and want to shift to another one.

Why do recruiters hate this format?

“You’re taking information out of context,” said the recruiter. “It’s easier to BS your way through to make things sound glamorous. Within the context of where [skills and accomplishments] took place, it gives me a better idea of what’s going on.”

They hate it because they need to draw their own conclusions. The functional resume format was created to cover up gaps in an applicant’s experience and recruiters know it. They will skip straight down to the work history to try and figure what you’re hiding. It’s a dead giveaway.

“I definitely want to see everything laid out in context,” said the recruiter. “I’ve seen plenty of people that try to use a functional resume that’s not in that context, and I tell them, ‘You’re just shooting yourself in the foot.’”

That said, recruiters understand that people change careers and can’t always count on their work history speaking for itself.

“If you’re trying to make that transition, yes, you’re going to want to try and list your transferrable skills,” said the recruiter. “But again, I wouldn’t do it so much where you’re listing everything at the top [above your experience].” Instead, the recruiter suggested taking a “more blended” approach.

The keyword “context” really jumped out at me when reading this though. Why? Because even though recruiters wanted to see “the context of where your skills and accomplishments took place,” what’s evident to me is that even though recruiters realize people change careers, recruiters don’t care about understanding the context of why a person is making a career shift, as there’s no place to show this on a resume. In other words, resumes are often optimized for linear progression within a specific field. They don’t adequately communicate logical progressions and changes to another field.

For example, when I look back on my life as a whole, the progression of my work seems logical within the context of my life’s experiences. When I look back on just the context of my work though, without knowing the larger context of my life, the progression might seem illogical and scattered.

It’s funny though. As I’ve always said, I’ve never consciously made career changes because I wanted to “work” in a new field. Instead it was often because I was excited by discovering a new field and even more so because it allowed me to express myself in newer ways than I could before. For example, learning about the Web was amazing, both because of the potential I saw of it but also how I could put it to use in expressing myself in newer ways. So working with the Web came naturally afterwards but the initial experience of it was one of just playing around and learning something new.

Going Beyond Resumes

Hiring Based on Skills & the Capacity to Learn

“Experience has almost no predictive value in the vast majority of work roles,” said Adam Grant, noted Wharton professor, author, and host of the conference. 

“Instead of showing me your resume, show me the work you’ve done, things you’ve built. It’s the portfolio model,” said Chike Aguh, chief innovation officer at the U.S. Department of Labor. “If you’re not hiring based on skills and the capacity to learn, you are missing out on talent.” 

I truly believe the future will be more about what you’re questioning and wanting to know than what answers you already know. Questions will be like quests that attract and align us towards larger societal goals.

Going Beyond Resumes

Putting Into Action What You Believe

These days employers who are considering you for a role want to know that a web search for your name will give them a snapshot of:

– what you believe in, and 

– what you’ve been up to

And when I mention your beliefs, I’m not only talking about your opinions. Opinions without results mean nothing. 

I’m interested in actions you’ve taken to produce results which are in line with your opinions. For example, do you believe that climate change is real? Great – and do you have a blog which educates people why? And how big is your following?

What’s poignant about these points above is that employees want these same very things even more so. They want to work for companies that actually take action on what they say they care about and believe, rather than it just being a facade to attract attention.

Going Beyond Resumes

A Dialogue of Meaningful Human Relationships

Creating strong connections with potential, current and past talent has become even more important in a job seeker’s market, particularly as platforms like The Muse have enabled the rise of the passive candidate.

“Employers have to organize around a candidate rather than a job posting,” Srinivasan said, meaning relationship and context is “everything.” A hiring manager directly contacting a passive candidate, for example, may encourage the potential employee to think differently about the opportunity.

“And because the market for talent remains super competitive, any recruitment is really a two way dialogue,” she added.

Going Beyond Resumes

Rediscovering the Aspirational Self

As workplaces focus on employee engagement — and increasingly, becoming a workplace that welcomes the humanity of its workers —employers want to see a snapshot of an actual human person. 

“Resumes are a point in time and not reflective of the human,” Penny Queller, SVP and GM of Monster’s staffing business unit, told HR Dive. “There’s nothing on a resume that demonstrates the individual’s aspirational self. It’s a primitive artifact in some regards.”

Miklusak agrees, saying resumes are “a very static presentation of who you are.”

The objective on a resume could be a potential place for this but alas, many conventional recruiters actually recommend to remove it as it’s seen as “outdated”.

Going Beyond Resumes

The Value of Personality

Previous generations valued years of experience and traditional resumes offer this chronological snapshot. But times have changed. Now candidates are judged on their ability to perform and collaborate, something resumes don’t highlight.

As a hiring manager, stretch to focus on engaging talent that add value and culture beyond titles and time stamps. There’s a need for a platform where skills, personality, and engagement are front and center. A vibrant platform where rich profiles and vibrant personalities thrive.

Even better, align your personality and skills by showing how what you’ve learnt over the years emerged from your personality interests.

For example, I never learned web design to become a web designer. I learned web design because I wanted a means of expressing my video game knowledge online and sharing it with others collaboratively as well. Web design allowed me to do that.

My professional web design work just arose as a byproduct out of that.