Monday, March 4, 2013

Introducing The IMAGINATOR


Quick review from my last post:

In the Human-Centered Resume, WHO, WHY and HOW are the 3 KINGS.

The message is:
WHO I am as a person, WHY I chose my past experiences, and HOW I went about doing them drives WHAT I've done, WHERE I did it and WHEN I did it. Therefore WHO, WHY and HOW  are the best indicators of my ability to succeed in the job I'm applying for.

Then I left you hanging with this suspenseful phrase: The resume itself looks like:

Drum roll please…..

            Short (one line)
            Story based
            Tie in with previous employment AND non-employment experiences

The first construct/superpower I’ve developed for my personal resume is “The Imaginator.” 

Never content to do something the conventional way if a better way is possible, the Imaginator always has an eye to possibilities.
When empowered in my workplace, I also have the efficacy to make improvements and experiment to help already awesome organizations spiral toward even more greatness.

As the Imaginator, I improved the line for more efficient and ergonomic short order cooking for two seasons at Stanley Baking Company. Ask the manager Becky about this; she was game to try nearly every suggestion I put forth. I also executed a number of wild lesson plans as a Teaching Assistant in the Sociology department at UMass Amherst to increase student engagement. Imagining a brave new life, I’ve lived in a new location every six months for the past 5 years.

 Woah, Woah, Woah. What Just Happened There, Mary?!

Notice how I gave some job history/experience information, a tie in to a reference, and demonstrated how this superpower works in two vastly different work situations.

One reason I wanted to create this kind of resume is because I’m transitioning out of my “career” as a seasonal line-cook and into any kind of work that nourishes my mind, body, and soul.

Housing my variety of experiences under a construct/superpower is so empowering for me because I’m a Meaning Maker (it’s another superpower). I see continuity in my life where others see chaos and skills-based resumes represent my life as disjointed and confusing to employers.

Wait she was a Teaching and Research Assistant for two years at a top university and then she worked for free at a Buddhist center and then became a line cook working in a town I've never heard of in the-middle-of-nowhere Idaho?

Actually, yes. That’s my life. And it may well be yours, too. Bold folks do weird things, ya know?

Keep In Mind

This is what I wrote off-the-cuff without a specific job posting/position in mind. 
My vision for the Human-Centered Resume is to tell relevant, short, simple stories that illustrate things at the intersection of:
·      Deep personal resonance in terms of illustrating who we are as gifted and capable humans
·      Deep resonance for employers in terms of our ability to rock their world by meeting eligibility requirements and then some

Value-added at every turn and completely in the realm of “show not tell.”

I am from The Show Me State after all.
As I play with this more I also want to make it visual. For example, “The Imaginator” would be represented with a symbol (e.g. imaginator x-ray goggles). I’ve just begun exploring how the visual element can be incorporated, but I love the idea of images and words dancing together on a page.


My first ask:

I'd love your feedback on the concept I've presented here. What, if anything, gave you an "aha" moment? What, if anything, made your brow furrow in skepticism? How can I make this better or present the idea better?

Compassion-fueled feedback is welcome; be aware this is rough and I am tender.

Reach me at marykoppes at gmail dot com


Photo Credit: photobunny


  1. Hey Mary! I very much like this concept! I had that "aha" moment when I thought about how this could be connected to how it's often said the most successful businesses sell the WHY and not the WHAT of a product. Granted, people aren't objects but you probably understand what I'm poking at...

    Anyways, something I thought about - the average time spent looking at a resume is 30 seconds. Granted, it all depends, but do you think this system could take up more time to review candidates? How does it factor into an employer who's reviewing 1,000s of candidates?

    1. Thanks for taking the time to give me some feedback, Angela.

      Yes, yes yes to giving precedence the "why" for products and people.

      I'll consider the "30 second" challenge as I move forward working with the format of the resume itself. Very useful to keep in mind.

      With the vision in my mind of the HCR, my hope is that it's so strange looking that it would beg another 30 seconds from whomever is looking at it :D

  2. I feel so much potential for this! Your examples really help it come alive! I love how this resume concept both allows the applicant to express his or her true self and clearly demonstrates to the talent seeker why this person will be great to have on the team. It's that win-win that the overwhelming majority of job coaches have assumed is impossible. Take THAT!

    1. Thanks for the encouragement, Christian!
      I'm always looking for that win/win sweet spot. I'm excited to keep developing this and to work with actual job postings to keep it centered on that sweet spot.