Author: Will

For Organizations, Interviews

The Myth of the Magic Question


Jay Gould, cofounder and CEO of Yashi, promises in Fast Company that he’s discovered the “Best Interview Question”. He asks this question after conducting 2-3 other interviews that have confirmed the general skills and strengths. At this point he is evaluating fit and motivation. Like many claims of magically powerful shortcuts, this one’s wrong. In fact, Gould’s question

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Professional Identity, Strategy

Success through Evasion


The career of a top chef in North Carolina has a great lesson for how to succeed against competition. The lesson: Don’t. The Path Katie Button exemplifies the meandering career path that we can so often only make sense of looking back in time. She began with a biomedical engineering Masters degree from L’Ecole Centrale

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Professional Identity

Why We’re All Artists


I’ve been watching a lot of food documentaries lately. As with most artists storytelling is everywhere. We take for granted that artists need to tell a story to prove the value of their work. Art is weird. It’s supposed to be unique and a mysterious human expression. Spreadsheets, generally less so. As a result, most

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For Organizations

A Hiring Lesson for Bing Gordon at Kleiner Perkins


I just saw this quote from Bing Gordon, GP at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers from Chicago Ideas Week last year. He said: I read resumes backwards, if you don’t have any interest, neither do I. I see hiring managers make this mistake again and again. Mr. Gordon’s error is mistaking arbitrariness for cleverness or

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For Organizations

When Experience Gets in the Way


One of the most cherished metrics in the workplace is “years-of-experience”. It has long been taken for granted for hiring and promotion, but it should no longer be. We hold onto years-of-experience because, as with so much in hiring and work, it was a useful indicator in the past. In the past, when one’s work domain

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Strategy

The Best Way to Create Luck


Rob Dyrdek went from a high school dropout to become a world-renowned skateboarder, media mogul and founder of a new sports league. His success, a story of taking opportunities and leveraging small successes into larger ones, has lessons to teach anyone looking to build a career. Rob took his credential as an early professional skateboarder,

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Reader Letters, Strategy, Unemployed

For Fear of Resume Gaps


Dear Will, I wanted to give you a quick update and then solicit your advice on a resume matter. You’re far and away the best career guru I’ve ever encountered, and I thought you might be able to help. To bring you up to speed, I now work at an exciting, young company in Boston.

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Strategy

Blending Where You Want to Live With What You Want to Do


When I meet with students they often tell me that they know where they want to live and what they want to do to kickstart their career. When I ask them what they want to do they cite a specific category of organization. This is almost the right approach, but usually creates trouble. Pick Problems

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G/Que

Chief Marketing Officer, Wisconsin, 54 | G/Que No. 13


What is your idea of a perfect day at work? Get email out of the way. Meet with my staff (informally, by walking around). Scheduled meetings are kept to a minimum. Then, I work on larger, strategic issues like planning and visionary projects while my staff executes marketing plans. As a team, we win in

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