I’m not sure where my story-time idea came into play, but I’ve used the following example time and again when explaining to students the reasoning and importance of having a portfolio to complement your resume.
It’s simple, and I think it illustrates my point without much further explanation.
We all remember third grade show and tell. It’s Monday at the end of the day, and all your classmates have their new stamp collections and pet rocks on their desks.
There was always the one student who didn’t bring anything to show, but still wanted his three minutes of fame. Let’s call this boy Jack.
Jack stands in front of the class with the utmost amount of enthusiasm. He has been working with his dog the past few weekends, teaching it some new tricks. Jack tells the class the dog will sit, shake, speak and beg on command. Jack’s classmates are unimpressed. Jack’s three minutes of fame are over, and he sits down in shame.
Next to present during show and tell was Ethan. Ethan, too, wanted to share a story about training his pet. However, Ethan made the effort to bring in his dog to show off some new tricks. Ethan told the dog to sit — the dog sat. Ethan said, “shake,” — the dog shook. “Speak,” — the dog barked. Ethan left school that day the most popular kid in class. The end.
The example above reflects the situation of having the same qualifications as another job candidate. One candidate had accomplished a lot, but he was unable to show the quality of his work. The other candidate took a few extra steps to package his best clips and writing samples to give the hiring manager a taste of his capabilities.
The phrase that wraps up this post is to show (not just talk about) your accomplishments.
~unique examples to consider including in your portfolio~
- Include a photo from a press event that documents the crowd and on-site media
- Grab a screen shot of the Web site you developed for a student organization
- Include a note from a client, spokesperson, etc., praising you for your quality of work
- Paste together a page of Tweets, praising your blog and smart ideas