For Organizations

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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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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For Organizations

Resumes and the Post-Qualification World


There was a recent blog post in Harvard Business Review in which Vikram Mansharamani urges us to “All Hail the Generalist”! Oh, how I wish. The author suggests that expertise is no longer the greatest competitive advantage and that candidates should prepare themselves to contribute as generalists. While I believe Mansharamani undervalues the continuing role

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For Organizations, Professional Identity

Irish Dancing and Chinese Calligraphy


No you can’t, you probably shouldn’t try, and it almost certainly won’t work. “I tried and therefore no one should criticize me.” Students who have gone through the University of Chicago probably wouldn’t risk such blasphemy. Nor have they enjoyed a criticism-free education. In reality, most of us have gotten to the point where, secretly,

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For Organizations

Moneyball, Jeremy Lin and Hiring Dogma


Frank Deford’s opinion piece today on NPR connects Brad Pitt’s movie Moneyball with the feel good sports story of the moment—Jeremy Lin’s rise on the New York Knicks. The dynamic in each case unintentionally illustrates lessons for organizations looking to hire the best talent. In Lin’s case, the scouting oversight that created the context for

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