Why can’t developers sell?

2 minute read

The suffering

I hate to pigeon hole developers as much as the next person. In this case I hope I may be forgiven.

After a rough week recruiting I was nearly devoured by my own boredom today. What is the world thinking sending in eight page documents telling me how they volunteered in the canteen while at university in the nineties.

As a software development manager who knows, and has had the honour of reading probably thousands of resumes in his career. Please developers SELL SELL SELL.

I say reading resume’s is an honour because in my opinion there is no greater responsibility an organisation may bestow upon you. The recruiting decisions you make as a manager may well end up costing the organisation millions of dollars for many years to come, so it is an important and honourable burden to bear.

So my fellow developers I am pretty sure what I am about to say will appear on the web a million times over but here is my flavour because apparently you aren’t reading the rest of those perfectly crafted articles trying ever so hard to help you find the next amazing role.

2 versions of my imposing wisdom, the “speed date” and “the chance encounter in a lift”.

Speed date.

Please approach your resume like a two minute opportunity to wow my mind. Seriously that is how the world should write a resume. I am a slow reader so two minutes accounts for a page at most. If you cannot tell me within the first page of your beautiful prose how awesome you are what chance do you have by page two I am already looking at the girl on the next table.

It needs to all happen and happen immediately. Tell me why what you did just yesterday is what I cannot live without in my team tomorrow. It cannot be simpler than that!

The chance encounter in a lift

You get in a lift and out the corner of your eye you notice my famous face. Wow can it be true here you are with five floors of lift journey time to tell me how fantastic you are.

Do you start with in “1994 I attended a school camp where I excelled at fire making and at an early age displayed a natural affinity with problem solving”. Barf!!

Hell no, you would rather tell me how you ripped the guts out of an old legacy application and totally re-crafted it in NodeJS over the weekend because you were bored and you think NodeJS is going to change the world. Right or wrong that sentence tells me you have an opinion are willing to have a go and truly love what you do. Get that across and do it quickly.

In closing.

The world has gone social. Especially if you have a career in web development have a web presence. At a minimum have a LinkedIn profile. If you cannot have a public page on the web talking about how great you are at your job what are you hiding?

SELL SELL SELL. Leave recruiters with no choice but having to meet you!

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