Everyone on both sides of the hiring equation today is super-connected and hyper-resourced. So, as Thomas Friedman points out in the NY Times, “every boss now has
cheaper, easier, faster access to more above average software, automation, robotics, cheap labor and cheap genius than ever before.”
In order to stand out as a dream hire in this cacaphonic cornucopia, like the kids in Garrison Keillor’s Lake Wobegon we each need to be able to demonstrate that we are well above the average hirability in our sector or niche.
But wait I hear you cry – it is statistically impossible for us all to be above average. Well, you are talking to someone whose first statistics lesson was themed on Disraeli’s (or was it Mark Twain’s?) observation that there are “lies damn lies and statistics.” So be it. I am not condoning lies here – so dig out the nuggets in your work history that’ll make your case where it counts. And bear in mind if everyone is doing this, then that average above which we need to place ourselves is necessarily a moving target – and it’s probably not moving down. So keep your hirability story constantly refreshed.
Critical to your hirability, and I have been banging on about this for years, are your passion and your curiosity. It is your passion and your excitement about your work and where your field is headed that helps make you special – these are critical to maintaining your above average status. Caring a lot about what you do (passion) and constantly exploring what is new (curiosity)– well how could you want to be any other way?
So Friedman – and here’s why he gets the big bucks – has put a catchy riff on this. He’s named what he calls the Passion Quotient (PQ) and the Curiosity Quotient (CQ) and says they are becoming more important than the Intelligence Quotient (IQ). I wonder whether he read in Inc Magazine how John Mackey, Whole Foods CEO, came up with SyQ, which measures how different parts of a system interconnect.
Herewith my own (frivolous) attempt to increase my QQ (Quotient Quotient). Maybe as you demonstrate that you are above average you could find a way to quantify that. Just as LinkedIn is asking us to broadcast that we appear in the top 5% or 2% or 1% of their searches. Let’s call it our HiQ. Your HiQ of course is your Hirability Quotient. We could put it at the top of our resume – finally a metric that can save people from having to think for themselves.
But seriously. Whether it has a Q number on it or not – our hirability is something which requires eternal vigilance.