“Your company launches a search for an open position. The applications start rolling in, and the qualified candidates are identified. Now the choosing begins. Person A: Ivy League, 4.0, flawless resume, great recommendations. All the right stuff. Person B: state school, fair amount of job hopping, and odd jobs like cashier and singing waitress. But remember — both are qualified. So I ask you: who are you going to pick?”
That is the preamble to Regina Hartley’s Ted Talk on ‘Why the best candidate might not have the perfect resume’. She then goes on to identify 2 types of candidates, the ‘Silver Spoon’ who had certain advantages and the ‘Scrapper’ who had to overcome tremendous odds to achieve all that they anything. She explains how she is a scrapper and somewhat demonstrates why we should choose the scrapper who is the underestimated contender whose secret weapons are passion and purpose.
“So back to my original question. Who are you going to bet on: Silver Spoon or Scrapper? ”
But even with all that said, how many H. R professionals would actually pick the so called ‘scrapper’? Afterall one could argue that the perfect resume is perfect for a reason! In a country like Zambia, were it’s an employers market and you literally get 100’s of resumes for the most basic job, how can we differentiate “passion and purpose” from sheer under qualification?
Furthermore, the so called ‘silverspoon’ could argue that its unfair to sterotype them as lacking drive and conviction.
I am committed to diversity and inclusive practices but I am not of the view that recruitment is that black and white, there exists a lot of grey.
What are your views?