Twofish's Blog

September 21, 2006

Beautiful Evidence – Edward Tufte and Resumes

Filed under: Career — twofish @ 5:55 am

Got a whole bunch of books coming in from Amazon.  One of them that just arrived is Tufte’s Beautiful Evidence, which has a long section about how Powerpoint is evil.  I’m actually pretty interested in that section since the arguments about how Powerpoint encourages sloppy thinking also seems to apply to resumes.  I’ve been thinking about rewriting my resume to use sentences and paragraphs.  Yes, it will make it harder for to skim through, but I think I really do want to work at a company which appreciates sentences and paragraphs.

Speaking of resumes, I’m starting my slow transition between jobs.  I *really* don’t want to leave my current job, but I’m concluded that I’ll gradually go insane if I stay here as the difference between what I’m doing and where I imagine I could be starts to diverge more and more.  I’m trying to make the transition slow and gradual so that it can be stopped early.  For the meeting at NYC, I’ll just be meeting with people for lunch and attending seminars, and that doesn’t mean I’m looking for a job.

However, afterwards, I’ll have to start contacting head hunters.  At that point things get somewhat more serious.  In the case of seminars, conferences, and lunches, I’ll be trying to offer the other party something useful for their time in meeting me.  Even if I there isn’t a job prospect, I’m hoping that what I’m doing with Shanghai warrants and Levy processes is useful enough to be worth someone’s time, and I’ll be structuring things so that I’ll learn something even in the absence of a job.

With headhunters it’s a bit different, since I’ll be burning their time for nothing if a job doesn’t come through.  Once I start getting serious offers, I’ll be wasting everyone’s time if I don’t take them seriously, and at that point it will cause huge disruptions if I get cold feet or if my current employer suddenly starts making counteroffers.  I’m trying to pace things slowly enough so that when I jump, it will be with no qualms and that there will be plenty of times and opportunities to have some necessary conversations if the other side wants it.

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