In high school I applied for a marketing job at The Bay. They had a group of grade 11 and 12 students from around the city they cobbled together as The Bay High School Council. We would work in the promotions department on weekends, perform in fashion shows, and then also learn about retail in different departments.
It was a prestigious job and competition was tough as applicants from around the city tried to get the gig. I’d like to think that my leadership skills, or creativity, or hustle got me the job but, in reality, I got it because I could do the splits.There was a spot on the resume for ‘special skills.’ I was an ice hockey goalie at the time, and I could do the splits, so I put that down in that section thinking it was a unique talent for a 16 yr old male to have.
During the interview they brought it up and asked for a demonstration. I did it and the job was mine. The rest of my resume was good enough for the job, but I had a skill that allowed me to stick out from the crowd. I was, as Seth Godin would describe it, a purple cow.
I was unique. I was remarkable. When it came down to building a short list, they could look at my name and remember “that was the kid that did the splits” and the rest of my qualifications would fill in behind.
That’s why my name is Buzz. When I was hired to work in Vancouver at Z95-3, it was at the tail end of the radio era where dj’s had unique and trendy names. The idea behind them is that you hear it, you know how to spell it, and it sticks out. When you go to a party you meet a bunch of Toms, Dicks, and Harrys, but how many Buzzes do you meet?
It’s memorable, it stands out, it’s great for marketing.
It’s also why, in my online resume, I mention that I have held two Guinness World Records. It’s an item that causes people to stop and say “wait, what?”
They want to know more. It’s an ice breaker. It’s a point of conversation.
It’s a little fact that allows me to stick out and be memorable.
I have had friends write resumes in crayon. There are stories littering the web about people who’ve applied for jobs in pizza boxes, handmade chocolates, to fake Amazon pages.
You want to stand out, you want to be creative, you don’t want to be ridiculous. It’s a fine line, but if you can have your application emerge as a purple cow, it’s a pretty cool thing.
Dad. Broadcaster. Writer.
Three time Guinness World Record Holder.
I run the world for Team Diabetes.