Arguments for Hiring Someone in Job Transition – Skills You Will Not Find on a Resume

If you were to change Newton’s third law of motion, which states “To every action there is always opposed and equal reaction”, to fit job transition it will sound like this: “To every job search experience there is always an equal learning you can use again.”

After meeting 250+ candidates and my own transitions, I have seen traits and skills that are learned in job search.  A candidate may not put these skills on a resume, but they are a huge benefit to the hiring company.

1 – Eager to Work: Businesses always want to find a ‘motivated’ employee.  Knock. Knock.  We’re here.

2 – Ability to Network: It’s more than learning networking techniques like LinkedIn, but the willingness to invest into building a network and the hard work of reaching out to others, and learning how to improve your ability to work with others.

3 – Value of Network to Business: A network is not just for finding a job.  It is a wickedly powerful tool to find and connect to clients, vendors, investors, candidates and advice, often with a national or international reach.

4– Communication Skill: Besides developing an effective pitch, it’s also delivering it in multiple forms: in person, e-mail, blogs, Twitter, resumes, etc.  Most important, candidates know how to keep it short.

5– Broadened view of business/Awareness of trends: When else in your career will you just focus on meeting loads of people, seeing so many businesses and learning about the market.  Networking can be a like a mini-MBA of learning.

6 – Understanding of their skills: The virtually continuous feedback stream from networking and interviews, gives a sharp view of skills, including those which are stronger than a candidate may think.

7– Open to new ideas: Search forces a candidate to think differently about a career path, how to find answers, what skills to use and living in new financial world… and they successfully lived through it.

8 – Not afraid of risk: How often do we complain of people not willing to take a bit of risk? Candidates try new ideas almost daily with their most precious resource: themselves.

9 – Dig up the Answer: No roadmap on how it should get done.  No problem. Candidates get creative to find connections, get inside companies, learn the language and get to know who will interview you.

10 – Ability to deal with adversity: Search is a war of attrition between what’s it like out there and a Candidate’s psyche.  Unlike work, everything is personal, which makes every defeat that much tougher.  If we survived this, a project that goes off course is a piece of cake to fix.

11– Constraints inspire innovation: No corporate support, limited finances and less than welcoming marketplace.  Candidates are not going to quit, so they make constraints a source of innovation.

12 – Local community contacts: Most networking is done locally and these are great for working in the community for non-profits and corporate awareness.

People currently employed can also see these items, but there is a greater frequency and heightened awareness when in job search that cements these traits into a candidate.  Of course, no two candidates will have the same level of these traits – but they will be there (and many others as well!).

Job search always gets a bad rap, so we all tend to hide our efforts while looking for a job.  So let’s promote how job search has improved us and what we can bring to a company.

Good luck today.

Mark