Nowadays we seem to define ourselves by numbers. Especially women have a talent to rack their brains over the way they look, their size and weight. Men, on the other hand measure the circumferences of their
muscles or they compare the width of their beer bellies.
In school the coolest guy was the one, who was able to jump the highest, throw the widest and run the fastest. – Later on in university you are under pressure to achieve high grates to keep up with your fellow students, as you don´t want to miss the possibility to show that you belong to the best.
All these things: size, weight, circumference of muscle mass, athletic achievements and grades are just a list of numbers, which do not make up a character or a personality.
Anyway this way of thinking does not end with graduating from university. Quite the opposite, as it is gains importance in our working lives. Before the recruiter gets to know you he just has your application with all the facts and numbers in it. So the individual interpretation of your resume is his only basis to judge on you.
The question is what impact numbers really have on hiring? Do the hiring managers just rely on them or are they willing to see behind the curtain?
The truth is that the selection process of the candidates got a new dimension with the increasing importance of the web. As companies already developed web-based reference systems which gather all the information that can be found about you in the web. Moreover networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn created a new rich information source for Human Recourses Management. Does this even put more pressure on us – as jobs applicants? Thus you have to have both a flawless application and a perfect image in the web. That is why you should always be aware of the information that you and others leave about you in this huge open book.
Have you ever `googled´ your own name? You might be surprised what you find out about yourself. And keep in mind what kind of first impression a recruiter could have by going through all this information and images about you.
Is this the first step to get away from the numbers, as social media enables recruiters to look beyond the resume or is it a dangerous step into a world where you might be judged for everything you ever did in your life?
This question should we all asked and answer for ourselves . But one thing is for sure it can be seen as a new trend to include the personality of an applicant in the hiring decisions process. This is reflected by the gaining importance of the so called `soft skills´ every company looks for in a potential hire.
It is no longer enough to be a functional expert. As a manager who is just able to deal with numbers certainly does not belong to best leaders. The Administrative and Financial Skills a just a fractional amount of the skills you need as a manager. Thus the soft skills, such as communication, listening skills, empathy and persuasion are far more important. If you know what you are doing as a manager and can´t properly communicate it to anyone else you will never be a good manager. The only way to really find out what is going on in an organization is to listen to the employees. Furthermore manager need to understand how people feel, why they fell that way and what they could do to make them feel differently.
This proves that we are not just a number in the system. As all this skills are expressed by your personality and can´t be seen by numbers.
Southwest Airlines is a good example for this new way of thinking. As Colleen Barett the President and Corporate Secretary said: “We say we hire for attitude and we train for skill… no matter how many letters of recommendation, if there was something about their attitude or behavior during the interview process that turned us off and that said he wouldn’t be a good fit.”
Let us try to tackle the same route as the Human Resources Department of `Southwest Airlines´ and be less influenced by numbers. – Due to the fact that beauty is not defined by weight, which is definitely proven by women like Marilyn Monroe.
Furthermore your intelligence is not defined by your grades in school or university. That is why you should disengage yourself from the pressure in our society, find your own identity and be happy with it.