It is good to know that I am not the only one with an unconventional career path. It certainly is different, especially if you hang out with those whose careers begin like this:
summer internship at a big-4 firm
graduate position at a big-4 firm
senior position at a big-4 firm
partnership at a big-4 firm (or something equivalent)
The past is not the best predictor of the future - we know that logically and instinctively. Yet we could not help but guesstimate what someone would be based on the things that they have done in the past:
their academic achievements (or lack thereof)
their work history/career history
how much moolah they have been making
At a recent conversation with my best friend, she talked about face reading. For those who don't know (like me), it is basically this theoretical stance on people's characteristics based on their facial features. For example, if the space between your eyebrows are wide, that means something. If your forehead is wide, it means something else. I told her that it is a dangerous thing to be aware of because it makes us judge others even more. She disagreed initially and eventually agreeing as I told her that as human beings, we are built to judge - it is always our natural reaction. It takes more effort not to judge rather than judge.
The same goes when anyone looks at my CV. I get judged on it. I get judged on the things that I do and on the things that I have not done. What CVs don't tell you is how much moolah was made during each of the jobs that you've had. Some of the jobs I have had, for example, I did because I needed money (and I made decent money out of them). Granted they do not last years, but they were nice while they lasted and more importantly, they saved my bank account (and my credit card).
I think people just forget that the reason that you work - or anyone for that matter - is to earn money. And as soon as they start realising that, the easier it would be for them to understand why you did certain jobs. Maybe I am just too liberal than the rest of the population, but I much prefer interviewing someone who has worked as a stripper to support herself through school rather than someone who claimed to work as an administrative officer but actually did nothing of the such (and was in fact stealing to support herself, for example). Lying and stealing are wrong - no matter whichever angle you use to view it.
The next time you get judged unfavourably based on your CV - remember this: you much rather not work with someone like that anyway. Do yourself a favour and walk away in the other director. Your time is limited and you much prefer to work with someone who can appreciate who you truly are and how far you've become.