“A” Player Nazis not Resume Nazis

Earlier this week I posted about a Linkedin discussion regarding resume spelling and grammatical errors .

Someone in the group posted this question:

OK, so perhaps I am just venting here…is there anyone else here who simply discards any applicant with grammar or typing errors in their resume or cover letter? Is there really any excuse for this?

To simply discard a candidate because their cover letter or resume contains grammar or typing errors ONLY hurts you. It puts way to much emphasis on something that plays too small a role in sales. It’s not a good practice.

“A” players live in the content quadrants. They don’t live in the spelling and grammar quadrants. Finding “A” players is our goal. It’s not finding people who missed spelled “conscious” or used “there” when it should have been “their.”

Resumes fall into to 4 categories. Yet  the “A” players we are looking for only reside in two; the awesome content, shitty grammar quadrant or awesome content and awesome spelling and grammar quadrant. Obviously, resumes from the top right quadrant are where we want to start. But  “A” players also live in the bottom right quadrant and when they are “simply discarded” because the resume contains mistakes, the pool of potential “A” players is diminished.

The existence of grammatical and spelling errors should play a role in the overall decision process. However, it shouldn’t be the sole determinant. That’s exactly what’s happening when you simply discard a resume for grammar and spelling. Doing this takes you out of the lower right quadrant.

Put grammar and spelling in their appropriate place. Hiring for a journalist is VERY different than hiring for a sale person. Take into consideration the egregiousness of the mistakes. Compare the mistakes with the strength of the content. Focus on the job requirements. Put more effort into finding “A” players than being a grammar Nazi.

NO, mistakes don’t mean someone doesn’t care or that they don’t know any better. It’s a horrible assumption I find it to be extremely ridgid. (Mark from Make them Click’s comment was spot on.) Mistakes are made. Stop giving them more value than they deserve.

Let’s be “A” player Nazi’s and stop being resume Nazi’s.