Stories seem to be the best way of conveying lots of amorphous information from one human being to another, providing of course that these stories are reasonably well crafted. In many of the situations surrounding careers they are, indeed, what a listener or reader is most ready to absorb. For example, when a recruiter asks, “What are your objectives in life?” she is likely most prepared to hear what stages you expect to negotiate on your way toward some ultimate set of possible career goals. Likewise, when an interviewer asks this old chestnut of a question she is really asking, isn't she?, what you bring in the way of experience and savvy to the job for which you are being considered.
Almost every item in a resumé or portfolio has at least the potential to be a story. Certainly most of the responses that one gives in an interview can be wrapped in stories. Some of us (like me!) have become reasonably good at writing procedures that direct machines (they’re called “computer programs”) or people. Almost all of us could use more practice at setting down our own stories.
More about this in a future blog entry. Meanwhile, here’s another blog that’s well worth following, as a set of examples of, and advice about, writing career related stories. It’s Tell Me About Yourself.