5 bad habits you've learned from HR departments

Philip Morgan

You may not know it, but I'd bet money that you've picked up some bad habits from HR departments.These bad habits are not bad at all if you're wanting to be an employee. But if instead you are wanting to move the needle on a client's business as a consultant or freelancer, then these are very bad habits indeed.Here are the ones I see:1) Leading with skillsSkills are a useful first-pass filtering mechanism for finding people who can perform a prescribed list of tasks against well-defined objectives. They are nearly useless for describing someone who can perform ill-defined or unknown tasks to create new value, "think outside the box", or diagnose difficult problems that have real business implications.2) Using personality as a core differentiatorAs an employee, you want to convince a potential employer that you will not cost them literally tens of thousands of dollars in firing/re-hiring cost by being a bad cultural fit, being incompetent, actively undermining their mission, or by being a legal liability to them. So, during interviews you magically become a "team player" or whatever other manufactured personality trait is currently in vogue for ideal employees.As a business value creator, your personality matters less than your ability to create a desired outcome. You may be created, quirky, cool, un-cool, or something else. That's great! But don't lead with your personality in your marketing.3) Seeing breadth as a competitive advantageAs an employee, breadth can be a competitive advantage because your first goal as an employee is to be so flexible you can slot into almost any open position. Later on in your tenure as an employee you'll maybe try to become irreplaceable. But as a job-seeker you'll almost never market yourself as a "category of one" for obvious reasons.In certain consulting/freelancing situations, breadth also is an advantage. But when it comes to marketing your services, breadth almost always creates confusion and apathy in those who are exposed to your marketing. Give a human brain too much to deal with at once and you get this:ImageSpecificity is what creates the kind of marketing response you want.Has choosing the right kind of specificity held you back? Get help with that here: http://thepositioningmanual.comTalk to you soon,-P