Podcast #167 – Marc Interviews Gary O’Neal on How to Create Your Career Story So That It Makes Sense
Gary is a recruiting and hiring consultant. He has trained and led high-performance recruiting teams that have made well over 10,000 hires. He has seen the inside story of how recruiting and hiring happens inside over 300 companies from Fortune 100 companies to boutique start-ups.
Gary’s industry background includes software, IT, eCommerce, banking, public sector, semiconductor, engineering, manufacturing, sales, marketing, and environmental companies. His experience spans all levels including C-level executives, senior management, technical leadership, and high-performance professionals as well as support staff and laborers.
Now on to the podcast…
Gary was originally on the podcast in episode 58. You can listen to it here.
Gary has been involved in HireFactors for about 2 years.
Many people have varied and eclectic stories. What Gary has found is that their resume and career stories look and sound like their career -scattered and varied.
The hiring manager is looking for someone who has been doing similar kinds of things to the job description and is moving right along in their career with increasing levels of responsibility, because that is the easy hire. If they cannot make sense of your career trajectory then you will not get hired. You need to make your resume and career story portray a clear message.
A software company was looking for a software tester related to dispensing pharmaceuticals. This is highly regulated and they needed someone to test the user interface, which is very routine and monotonous. Gary found someone who had been working in manufacturing – specifically testing related to fighter aircraft. This was testing torque on bolts and welds. He had to do this day in and day out and fill out very complex forms. The hiring manager immediately kicked the resume back.
Gary explained that this person had been performing similar tasks as the position they wanted to fill, had tremendous attention to detail and would not get burned out. If this person had applied directly to this position with no one who was able to translate their skills, there is no way this person would have even gotten an interview.
How Would You Know How to Craft Your Story?
You need to translate the language from the old career to the new career.
Listen to the Thea Kelly podcast episode Creating a Career Pivot or Change Resume.
You need to have basic competencies in the job you want. You need to work on defining the characteristics of an ideal candidate and then map your background to match those characteristics.
Gary gives multiple examples.
Sometimes you need to eliminate skills and experiences that do not relate to what the hiring managers value. Gary gave an example of an event planner with lots of international experience. The problem she was running into was hiring managers who did not value the international experience that was front and center on her resume and story. Gary explained you need to start talking about things that the hiring manager is looking for.
Gary suggests you find people who are doing the work and solving the problems you want to solve. You will discover where they work, as well as the kinds of skills they have and do not have. This will give you clues on how to construct your story.
Put Yourself in the Shoes of the Person Doing the Work You Seek
Imagine what it would be like to do the job you seek.
Gary gives multiple examples of how someone could do this.
Reach out to people and use a little flattery to get people to talk to you. Use the magic word “Advice”.
You should be able to read your resume from the bottom up and it should tell a cohesive story. If it does not you need to keep working on it.
You can email Gary here.
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