Why picking the Top 4 resumes often leads to hiring failures – Denver Business Journal

When time is scarce and you are staring at a mountain of resumes, it’s natural to want to whittle the mountain down. Most managers say, “Let’s start with the three or four very best resumes. We can always come back later to consider the other candidates.” It feels like smart time management, but it doesn’t work.

Marty Koenig‘s insight:

Bob says “the people with “perfect resumes” often aren’t the best candidates.”  I agree. I also contend that the reciprocal is true. My personal experience is the best candidates don’t have the most perfect resume. 

Just because someone has spent the effort and time to make a perfect resume that matches the job perfectly, and hits 100% of all the job requirements, does not mean that someone with an 80% resume is a much better candidate and will perform much better once on the job. 

When hiring managers or HR screeners spend all of 30 seconds reading the resume of a senior executive, they are doing their company a disservice. 


1. Carve out the right amount of time to engage in the hiring process. 

2. Read the resumes. don’t just skim them.

When I hired 900 people to deploy to nine regions in 30 days, I read several thousand resumes. Every word. No skimming. That’s one way I grew a $30M practice to $150M and improved gross margin by 50%. 

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