My post about How Important is a Resume for Freelance Writers? has led to some interesting comments. Some people think they are a valuable marketing tool, while others are less sold on the value of this document.
I’ve been doing some thinking as well, and have a different idea to present. Maybe we should be moving away from the idea of presenting a resume to a potential client. Before you immediately dismiss the idea, look at it this way:
A Resume is for Someone Looking for a Job
When you are a freelancer, you are not looking for a “job.” The relationship you have with a client is not one of an employer and employee. Your “boss” is not your client; you are the boss. You are the President and CEO of “Me, Inc.”
You don’t work “for” your client; you are working “with” them. They are paying you to provide a service and you do need to do what you can to make sure that they get what they want. That’s just good business. Now the question becomes whether you need to produce a resume like a job seeker to do business with someone.
Let me ask you this: The last time you were looking for someone to do work for you, did you ask to see their resume? Have you asked your doctor, dentist, or the person who came over to fix your dishwasher for their credentials? I’m thinking you didn’t and it wouldn’t have occurred to you to do so.
Are freelancers not professionals too? Of course we are. Just for the record, if someone asks to see my resume, I’m happy to provide them with a copy, but I don’t automatically volunteer it. The last new client that I worked with made the decision without seeing my resume or any writing samples (even though I did offer to provide them). We just talked about what I could do to help his company reach its goals, and agreed to work together.
Could it be that clients are more concerned about what you can for them now than what you have done in the past? I would be interested in hearing your opinion.