Imagination: There’s Just No Substitute

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Creativity certainly helps in finding jobs. I say, don’t be boring. Don’t be predictable. Don’t be just another candidate. Stand out. Be Different. Use a little creativity. Here are some examples of people who used creativity to land a job:

  • A person who had been out of work for four months saw an ad for her dream job with a local TV station.  The standard tactic, a cover letter with a copy of her résumé, netted absolutely nothing.  So, she launched a more imaginative campaign, which included letters from the fellow she was going with, from her lawyer, from her eighty-year-old mother, even from her priest, who wrote, “I’m enclosing this in hopes that you will hire her.  It;s depressing to look at her sad face, and besides, we haven’t had a donation from her in months.”
  • A candidate for a teaching job with the Minneapolis Public Schools sent a singing telegram praising her skills.  “When people sell themselves in a creative way, it does attract attention,” said the person who hired the candidate.
  • An advertising applicant won a job at an ad agency when he sent out a creative mailer touting his services.  When the cover was opened, the inside page showed a photo of the candidate standing next to a sign that read, “I’m the One.”
  • A contender for the marketing director position at an arena where professional basketball is played sent her résumé and cover letter in a sneaker with the comment, “Now that I’ve got one foot in the door, how about the other?”

As my friend Pat Fallon, chairman of Fallon Worldwide, one of the great advertising companies, says, “Imagination is one of the last remaining legal means you have to gain an unfair advantage over the competition.”

Mackay’s Moral: Really smart people know creativity often beats knowledge.

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