TED: Jason Shen

This week’s TED Talk was filmed during the 2017 TEDResidency in New York, New York, in November 2017. The TED Residency program is an incubator for breakthrough ideas. It is free and open to all via a semiannual competitive application.

Very few of us hold jobs that line up directly with our past experiences or what we studied in college. That is the case of TED Resident Jason Shen, who studied biology but later became a product manager at a tech company.

In this quick, insightful talk about human potential, Shen shares some new thinking on how job seekers can make themselves more attractive -and why employers should look for ability over credentials.

Jason posits that the hiring systems we built in the 20th century are failing us and causing us to miss out on people with incredible potential and suggests strategies we need to identify tomorrow’s high performers:

  1. expand your search: If we only look for talent in the same places we always do, we’re going to get the same results we always have
  2. hire for performance: candidates should be asked to demonstrate their skills before they’re hired
  3. get the bigger picture: avoid labelling a candidate based on a single entry on their resume

In other words, Jason Shen suggest that we stop equating experience with ability, credentials with competence.

Jason Shen is the co-founder and CEO of Headlight, a performance hiring platform, creator of The Talent Playbook, and has been featured in the New York Times, Fast Company, Quartz and The Atlantic.