I have this idea I like to play with which I call the “Alternative Resume”.
Everyone we meet in business has a resume. Its normally a very dry, 3-6 page document that lists your contact details and all your achievements, in chronological order. Every item on it has been phrased to make you look your best. The only point of this document appears to be getting you a job.
All of us have another resume though, I call it then “alternative resume”. Its terrible for getting you a job but its absolutely fantastic for networking.
The alternative resume is all about the stuff that makes you interesting, but isn’t a self promoting achievement. For instance:
- For the life of me I can’t figure out why the Square root button is on every single calculator, despite the fact that less than 1% of the population knows how to use it.
- I have fair skin and grew up in Perth so I know what the Dermatologists scalpel feels like.
- I met a guy who worked for Telstra, whom I can’t remember anything else about him other than he went to school with Elle McPherson.
- I went to School with Darren Bennett, who was famous (at school) for clocking the P.E. Teacher whilst playing footy at the school.
- My moral dilemma in March was accusing then convincing an old flatmate that he had stolen my wetsuit 15 years ago. A week later my brother in-law gave it back to me (because I had loaned it to him 10 years ago). I haven’t told my old flatmate though because I was embarrassed.
A strange group of things to disclose about myself, however they all share one attribute. They are interesting little bits and pieces about me that make me memorable.
You see its not the size of your network, or who you know, its whether you have mind share that matters. When I meet new people, the easiest way to have them remember me is to make them feel comfortable, as if I was an old friend. So unless there is a good reason not to, I like to share details from my “alternative resume”. Its the easiest way to “get to know someone” and have them remember me.
I don’t think I’m mechanical or insincere when I do this, because I am genuinely interested in getting to know people. I also avoid over-sharing, which is why I haven’t told the “stinky suit story” today.