Resumes are backward-looking documents, and are great for when people are looking to do something similar to what they have previously done. They are not great at communicating all-around or cross-functional talent, and the ability for many folks to do something completely different. Currently, they act as historical anchors, making it more difficult for people to make interesting moves.
Some entrepreneurs believe that it’s best to take someone who is super-smart and talented and throw him or her into a challenge, even if the person has no experience in that particular area, over someone who has experience but does not sparkle in an all-around way. For football fans, this is the Antonio Gates theory (despite Gates not having played college football, he will end his career as one of the best tight ends in NFL history).
Despite this, the way the recruiting process often works is very conventional and it takes a narrow view of things and it can whittle unconventional candidates out of the talent pool. My thesis is that this is causing a huge economic and human deadweight loss to our economy and society as talented folks don’t get to move around or it takes them too long to make a cross-functional move. I would love for folks to figure out a way to take on this issue, and I think the result would blow existing career and professional-oriented sites out of the water by reducing the importance and power of the traditional resume.