Maybe you saw In Quest To Stand Out, Take Care With Gimmicks in Tuesday's Wall Street Journal.

The article, by Sarah Needleman discusses creative tactics used by job applicants to make their resume stand out.

In her story, Needleman says

A junior marketing professional tried sending his resume to a company hiring manager via homing pigeon, says Cynthia Shapiro, a job-search coach in Chatsworth, Calif. But as far as the job hunter knows, the recruiter wasn't interested, because the animal never returned, says Ms. Shapiro, who began working with the job hunter after the incident.

That might be something junior marketing professionals might do to show their pluck, but it appears to me that the JMP knew nothing about homing pigeons.

As for the JMP, two things about this anecdote strike me as odd.

You see, when released, a homing pigeon goes home to its own coop, usually at a great speed and whatever the distance. Racing pigeons have been known to cruise almost effortlessly at speeds around 50 miles per hour.

So, one thing that strikes me as odd is how the JMP attached a resume to a bird that weighs a pound or less. Perhaps he used very, very fine tissue paper with very, very tiny print in a capsule attached to the bird's leg. That's how it worked in World War II, more or less.

Today, I suppose you affix a micro-chip, or SD-card onto the bird and then set it free. It will circle a few times and then head to its home perch.

If the JMP was able to affix the resume to the bird, well, the bird would have gone home and not to the company hiring manager.

That would be, of course, unless the JMP broke into the company hiring manager's loft, stole a bird, affixed the resume and then released the bird the next day.

That's when it would have gone home, to the company hiring manager's coop where the Pigeon Flyer would have noticed the capsule and retrieved the Ovaltine de-coder and the JMP would have been hired at an exceedingly great sum of money.

That, dear reader, is my take on using a homing pigeon to deliver your resume to a company hiring manager.

IMHO, it's a quaint story, but it probably didn't happen.

Why Attention-Seeking Tactics
Often Backfire on Job Hunters

Some professionals feel the need to use oddball gimmicks to stand out from the competition, such as sending a resume to a recruiter via homing pigeon. But most stunts are embarrassing failures.

Copyright © 2007 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

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