Your last recommendation is "start from the beginning". How does that apply if you've changed carreers? I got my degree in Chemistry and worked in that field for a while. I got sick, had to take work doing whatever while I got better. Then I got into software development.

After 10 years in software, including lead and managerial roles, I'm pretty sure no one cares about my ability to do titrations or take dictations. I've got the month/year on my degree so there's a pretty clear gap that I'm always happy to talk about.  

What is the benefit of including those on my resume when I have so much more relevent things to talk about? 

mfculbert's picture

I listened to the podcast this morning. I am now in Learning and Dev. My last 14 years of history in education and educational administration apply. My intention is as follows:

At the bottom of the resume, below positions and above the education line, I will place

1980-2001 - misc positions in retail, child care, horticultural management, and music ministry.

I would LOVE to have a better option.

Smacquarrie's picture

Trying to understand how a non-related position from last century (or even a decade ago) would benefit you on your resume?

If they ask about what other experience you have during the interview that is one thing. To take up valuable space on your 1 page resume, even just to write "hi" seems ounter to the rest of what you are trying to accomplish. 

On your CMD you want to include everything, you never know when it may help, and on the resume that you prepare for each job application you include your current position up to the last 10 years unless you have something that is relevant to the position you are applying for. 

Ex - I have been with my current employer for 14 years as of today. Prior to that I worked in retail and security. Neither of those have any relevance to my current position. My military experience after high school does. With 8 positions/1 company over the past 14 years plus my military and college experience, I am out of room on my resume. To roll it to a 2 page resume for the joy of adding "Security Guard" and "Delivery Driver" to a resume for a manager seems like a waste to me. 

My resume includes my current position and my military experience. I am more than happy to talk about the break in work during the interview. 


PhilipR's picture

The content in this cast was generally good but like others who've posted, I was disappointed that the space issue wasn't discussed. It seemed that Mark and Wendy were assuming the only reason to omit this is to hide gaps.

PhilipR's picture

As I understand it, I should put any comments related to this one episode here on this same thread. In general, I thought it content was as excellent as all the other CTs casts, but besides the issue discussed above, I have another bone to pick.

Mark and Wendy briefly touch on research into the relationship between names associated with race on identical résumés and the responses received. They raise the methodological critique that sending the same résumé twice to the same recruiter would yield a negative response the second time around.

Although they don't name a specific paper, the best known one on this topic is probably "Are Emily and Greg More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination" (Bertrand and Mullainathan, 2003). Just a casual perusal of the methodology, particularly section 3.3 "Responding to Ads" (p.8), indicates the researchers did not send the same résumé to the same recruiters twice; instead they sampled at random from a larger bank of "high quality" and "low quality" résumés, sending two of each (with different names) in response to each ad. Clearly, not all "high quality" résumés are of equal quality, but if the sample size is sufficiently large, the findings could still be statistically significant.

I don't believe any knowledge of economics is needed to understand this part of the paper. In my opinion, instead of attacking an anonymous piece of research on methodological grounds of unclear source--perhaps pulled out of thin air, or perhaps referrring to some other study--Mark and Wendy would have done better to skim the Bertrand and Mullainathan paper and if necessary issue more on-point metholodogical critiques. Of course, naming some other piece of research with the problems given would also have been a fine option, as well as omitting this criticism entirely.

But Bertrand and Mullainathan's paper is important enough to the topic of Career Tools that I think it's worth discussing a few of these "academic" details to get them right. I'm very mindful of the perception that we academics are detached from the "real world", but that perception is unfairly exarcerbated in this instance.

Ambrose023's picture

Don't take yourself (or your career) too seriously. Plenty of brilliant people started out in jobs they hated, or took paths that weren't right at the beginning of their careers. Professional development is no longer linear, and trust that with hard work and a dedication to figuring out what you want to do with your life, you, too, will be OK.