Dear Hiring Manager,
I can do this job. You are likely going to read my resume and think, this candidate does not fit the cookie-cutter requirements we have outlined for this role. Perhaps you may even believe that my not having the 10+ years of specific work experience in a Human Resources role (or as I like to think of it, People Strategy) disqualifies me as a viable candidate with the potential to bring meaningful value to your company. You would be terribly wrong.
Candidates are not as one-dimensional in their professional backgrounds as they once were, and it is ridiculous that companies are looking to hire individuals based on the same criteria of old. You miss out on tremendous talent by continuing to employ these archaic methods of recruitment. Entrepreneurship is on the rise, and people are becoming more savvy to things faster than they were before. Information is accessible to everyone and anyone, and creative ideas abound in minds that are not being given the opportunities to explore them. Yes, there is a risk associated with hiring someone with a non linear background for a specific role—but taking a calculated risk means there is the potential for high reward.
My passion is and has always been working with people. What keeps me up at night and gets me excited in the morning is identifying solutions for how businesses can better recruit diverse talent, develop employees, and more effectively marry their business goals to their people strategy. Furthermore, I want to help you develop a process that streamlines communication across departments and ensures everyone is aligned to the common goal of employee engagement and business success. I have ideas. I have solutions. I want the opportunity to add value and implement them in a company that has the courage to take me on.
I get it—we should pay our dues in our declared career specializations and rise through the ranks accordingly. It makes perfect sense, but is it the most innovative or effective approach given the way the professional landscape is changing? There are people currently working in roles with traditional backgrounds and experience that have failed to make noticeable impact in their respective fields due to an inability to think outside of the box; take a chance on someone who thrives on not being in the box.
Most companies struggle with diversity, retention, and employee engagement because they are wedded to tradition, and in this respect, it is to their detriment. It is time to consider a divorce. Embracing the dynamism of time is essential if companies are to remain relevant and maximize their growth. In the next 10 years, 75% of the workforce will be comprised of millennials and their behavior significantly differs from previous generations. 83% of millennials are more actively engaged when they believe their company fosters an inclusive culture. Further, gender diverse companies are 15% more likely to outperform their respective national industry medians, and companies reporting highest levels of racial diversity in their organizations bring in nearly 15 times more sales revenue than those with lowest levels of racial diversity. With these numbers in mind, if you maintain the same approach to recruitment, where is your foresight in ensuring your company continues to be head and shoulders above its competition? The linear career requirements you are looking for feed you individuals who share the same learned approach to trying to tackle these problems, providing a myopic perspective that does not lend itself to creative, potentially more effective, solutions.
My proposal is that you give us an opportunity to converse. Learn more about what I have to offer and how, and then make an informed decision about whether or not I deserve the chance to be instrumental in helping you identify solutions to your challenges. I am a fresh voice. My atypical background and unique approach to problem solving is an asset, not a liability. I am more than a resume, I am more than a list of tasks, and I have much more to offer than the titles you read on two sheets of paper.