Finding your “Gimmick”

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A still from “You Gotta Get a Gimmick” from the film version of Gypsy.

Let me set the scene: it was Demo Night at Hackbright Academy in late 2016 and I was SO EXCITED. If you don’t know much about software engineering bootcamps, “Demo Night” refers to the night where students present the projects they have been diligently working on for several weeks to prospective companies that are looking to hire junior engineers. The process varies by school, but our Demo Night consisted of 3 minute presentation from each student, and then 3 minute speed-dating style interviews with each company. It’s an exciting, yet stressful, night for all; for many students, it’s their first time interviewing as an engineer!

Nerding out over my poster being in Union Square.
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Why Do We Hire Based on ‘Experience’? HR, Automattic, and Open Badges

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Get Shift Done: Management

It’s 2016. Nobody can reasonably expect to have a ‘job for life’, or even work within the same organization for more than a few years. As a result, you’re likely to dip into the jobs marketplace more often than your parents and grandparents did. That means it’s increasingly important to be able to prove:

  • who you are
  • what you know
  • who you know
  • what you can do

Unfortunately, hiring is still largely based on submitting a statement of skills and experience we call a ‘Curriculum Vitae’ (or résumé) along with a covering letter. This may lead to an interview and, if you like each other, the job is yours. We have safeguards in place at every step to ensure people don’t discriminate on age, gender, or postal code. Despite this, almost every part of the current process is woefully out-of-date. I’ve plenty to say about all of this, but will save most of it for another time.

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