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We were working on a CV-Resume for a locally famous very busy young gynecological surgeon who was also a TV personality. She was applying for a fellowship to the MD Anderson Cancer Centre, a renowned internat- ional teaching hospital in Houston, Texas.

I knew that she had a great chance on the basis of her obvious credentials and her work at publicizing gynaecological cancer - and told her so. But there would be very serious international competition of equally qualified physicians.  She was the usual very busy doctor, not really focusing on the work at hand, and had done little preparation.

Her CV-Resume material focused on medicine.  At 4Minutes, the CV-Resume we also features detailed descriptions of people's personal

 

 

interests, activities, sports, volunteer, travel... When I pushed her for how she spent her free time, she thought it would be frivolous to talk about.  Finally, and somewhat irritated, she said that one of her pastimes was scuba diving.

I said, “You’re hired.” She was shocked at my enthusiasm.

She told me I was crazy and was quite angry at these frivolous things – at our serious consulting rates! I explained that in all my visits to Club Meds, I scuba dived. The only people who were crazy enough to get up at 5:30 am on their holiday to go scuba diving were surgeons!

If it wasn’t for those surgeons there would not have been a quota of divers to fill the boat. She didn’t believe me, but kept the scuba in her resume.  A month later, she came bursting in from her busy schedule to apologize and say she’d received the offer. 

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 The first question in the interview was, “So you’re a scuba diver!”   The five people around the interview table were all divers. That was thee main conversation of the interview. And she got the offer.

Why is that important? When you arrive to the end of the interview process, you there will be three candidates who could all do the job with their eyes closed. So the employer can choose any of the finalists with his/her eyes closed and get a proficient employee.  The question then becomes, “Which of these candidates do I want to have hanging around here 40 hours per week?”  This is where your personal interests and activities will make all the difference.” You’ll get the offer if the employer can find several personal things to relate to.

 

 

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