Now, this is not job search!

“Get your whole resume on one page! And don’t include your references! Leave off dates so they won’t know how young or old you are! And don’t let on your religion, cultural background, yah, yah, yah, yah…”

Sitting in a resume writing class can be a debilitating, bewildering, self-esteem-battering experience. Add to that the fact that you’re learning how to write a resume that looks identical to every other resume out there.

I’ve always felt that the resume simply places us all in the same basket, like a bunch of apples, begging to be selected, hiding any bruises that we might have picked up during the trip of life. And what, pray tell, to an employer is a ‘bruise?’

If a resume is to be effective, shouldn’t it be a sales tool rather than an elimination device?

Steve Hanson has taken the search for meaningful economic activity to a new level. What he’s done takes courage, determination, a background in excellence, and a quiet confidence that he is a product worth looking for. There’s no apple basket for Steve.

I came across an eighth page ad recently that addressed itself to Executives and Owners who might be interested in injecting a significant dose of ability and creativity into their business. The ad then went on to ‘sell’ the skills offered… a creative sales / negotiator with a proven track record in three unrelated industries… someone who sells intangibles as well as he sells tangible products… someone who wants to manage senior people with mutual respect… someone who’s creative, motivated and wants a growth business where he can truly make a difference.

This is an intriguing offer, I decided. I called.

The man on the other end of the line is equally intriguing. Steve has relocated to Simcoe County for a lifestyle change and a commitment to family. He’s got a fascinating background achieving excellence in each of his fields of endeavour. He’s looking for a growth company that has ethics, a real push for growth, a desire for excellence and a functional attitude that breeds win-win-win.

Tall order. He’s clear about what turns his crank. He wants to be creative, to think ‘outside the box,’ to be welcomed as part of a team that truly believes in what its company is doing.

“I am most effective at selling an intangible like a service,” he told me, sweeping across Simcoe County and Huronia as his preferred work space.

Steve’s poised to look at opportunity, but he’s been wise enough to refuse to participate in the basket of apples technique that so many companies respond to with their searches for employees. What a lesson to us all!

Of course, with my interest in successful small businesses start-ups, my logical questions came: “why not start your own company, rather than look for someone else’s?”

“I just might,” came the answer. But first, he’s teaching us all a lesson about placing a value on ourselves and what we do and turning away from the ‘herd’ mentality that is often the job market. Don’t get me wrong… Steve has the presentation package that spells out the details and proves the claims. And interested people with opportunity will find that out through

What he doesn’t have is the desire to line up with a crowd of people hoping that somehow he’ll stand out. Because he already does.

It’s a valuable lesson. Thanks, Steve.