What Google Looks For, Part 2

photo by  brionv (Creative Commons License.)

A few months ago, we talked a bit about what Google looks for in a new hire. And now, we’re back with part two! Okay, to put it more accurately, Thomas Friedman of the New York Times is back with part two. After all, he’s the one cool enough to get interviews with Laszlo Bock, the guy who’s in charge of all hiring for the tech behemoth.

In the article, you’ll find all sorts of great information about how you get yourself out of Google’s (and other power employers’) big pile of resumes and into their small, more selective one. For example, Bock stresses that it’s important to challenge yourself with harder classes and majors in college, even if it means submitting to self-inflicted grade deflation, instead of taking an easier track. Annoyingly, he cites English as one of the easy ones; let me write you a few lines of free verse to illustrate how wrong you are, Laszlo!

But seriously, probably the most interesting thing here is his take on resumes. He insists that it’s important to frame your strengths relative to your competition. He gives an example to illustrate what he’s talking about:

Most people would write a résumé like this: ‘Wrote editorials for The New York Times.’ Better would be to say: ‘Had 50 op-eds published compared to average of 6 by most op-ed [writers] as a result of providing deep insight into the following area for three years.’

I’ve seriously never thought about doing that. And in certain cases, I don’t even know how to get the information that I would need to even craft a statement like that. But still, it’s a really interesting take on the resume-writing process, and one that you should keep in mind and use, if possible. After all, the get-a-job process requires you to think about how you stand out among your peers. Why not make it abundantly clear right there in your resume? That way prospective employers don’t need to go digging around to see how your stats match up (and spoiler alert: they won’t).

So read his take on things, and rethink what you highlight in your resume.

photo by brionv (Creative Commons License.)

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