Are You Hoarding or Sharing?

A client asked me “should I put the PDF of my resume on my personal website and keep the Word document to myself? I don’t want someone downloading it and stealing the content.”

A fellow resume writer told me “I never put my best samples online because someone might steal my designs.”

And a web designer once suggested to me that we only show partial sample resumes on our site “to stop people copying your work.”

Think about that for a moment … the client would be prepared to lose out on job opportunities because her resume wasn’t accessible online. The resume writer is willing to have people make buying decisions based on work that isn’t the best she can do. And if the web designer had his way, potential Blue Sky clients would have to try and judge our work based only on snippets.

And all for what? To stop someone copying a resume?

Look, there are no new ideas under the sun. That great idea for a resume layout you had? Someone else has had it too. You’re just not that special.

Also, no one can copy what you do although they may try. Every now and then potential clients send us resumes that they clearly copied from this website. But their attempt never comes close to the original, and that’s is why they eventually get in touch and ask for help.

And by the way, if the worst that happens is that an unemployed person with very little money is able to take some of my ideas and use them to get a new job and put food on the table – well, that’s not such a bad outcome.

Whether you are selling a service, or whether you are selling yourself for potential employment opportunities, showing anything less than your best is nuts. Put your best resume online in all formats. Show your best work samples when you go for interviews. If you have a design portfolio, upload your most creative work. If you’re a writer, share your top articles.

Hoarding knowledge is for little kids taking tests. The rest of us should stop being so precious and share the best we can do.

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