The New York Times has run a regular Sunday feature column in which the CEOs of various companies talk about their hiring procedures. Their comments raise interesting points about resumes.
For example, David Politis, CEO of BetterCloud, has advised new college graduates, “The first thing I tell people is, try to go where you can be a big fish in a small pond…where you can actually have a real impact on the business. That gives you an opportunity to punch above your weight class.” A resume should show more than the ability to finish tasks; it should show solid contributions made in previous positions. Companies want to know: What did the candidate accomplish in the past?
Vivek Gupta, CEO of Zensar Technologies, has said, “I want to hire people who are very different from me or better than me in certain areas so that one plus one equals more than two.” Here Vivek Gupta is speaking to the need of companies to fill the gaps in their organization. Job postings and company websites are the primary sources to identify to those gaps and then address them in a resume and cover letter. Companies want to know: What value will the candidate add?
Stewart Butterfield, CEO of Stack, reflected on “soft skills,” such as empathy, courtesy and time management. “One way that empathy manifests itself is courtesy….Don’t let your colleagues down; if you say you’re going to do something, do it…[Try] to anticipate someone else’s needs and [meet] them in advance.” Professional resume writers know the importance of addressing soft skills in a resume. When describing accomplishments, the resume should make it clear how the candidate has helped mentor teammates, smoothed difficulties, improved communications or efficiency and contributed to a good work environment. Companies want to know: Will this candidate fit in with our culture?