I was asked recently during a roundtable discussion with a group of job seekers if I thought there was too much career advice floating around the internet. The question was one that demanded careful forethought, but just as I was about to speak my opinion, I thought I’d turn the (round)tables on them and ask: “It’s not important what I think…what do you think? Are you having to wade through too many or not enough tweets, blog posts, and LinkedIn articles or discussion groups about jobs and careers? Are you getting the specific information you need to move forward with your career, or is it too generic for your purposes?”
As expected, the responses varied according to where individuals were in their job and career progress, but there was agreement among the participants on the following three points:
- Because people are all across the spectrum of career and job status, too much information is better than not enough.
- Many are using Twitter to filter the job/career information they receive, and once they identify individuals or companies who provide information of value, they latch on to them in other social media (blogs, websites, LinkedIn, discussion groups, etc.) and media outlets (books, webinars, podcasts, seminars, and so on). No one mentioned Facebook as a regular search vehicle for job or career opportunities.
- Many of the larger job bank sites provide articles that are often too shallow or basic in their career advice; people stated they would rather read articles written by career experts rather than those penned by staff writers.
The group did press me for some parting advice on working the job market, so I relayed some information from the Harvard Business Review on three inter-related factors that influence the transformation of the job market (the graphic below captures how these factors are changing the nature of work. Source: www.2020workforce.com):
- Evolving workforce demographics (influence of workforce participation rates, baby boomer retirements, automation, skill/education level of workforce)
- Increasing influence of globalization (markets have long escaped geographic barriers, such as oceans or mountains; advances in technology; English as “universal” language)
- Refilling the leaking leadership bucket (as more experienced leaders and skilled workers exit the job market, how will that expertise/leadership void be replaced or refilled?)
These and other influences suggest that employers are and will increasingly be looking for self-motivated candidates with a high degree of commitment to excellence in the pursuit of the greater good for the organization and the people in it. These candidates will possess a selfless servant attitude (and the other 5 success qualities) that I have written about in Chapter 16 of Confessions of a Hiring Manager Rev. 2.0.
It’s a whole lot bigger than simply using the proper résumé typeface sizes or not using “Objective” statements…
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Former Fortune 500 hiring manager Donn LeVie Jr. is the author of Strategic Career Engagement (September 2015), and the book that reset the rules for successful job and career strategies: Confessions of a Hiring Manager Rev. 2.0 (June 2012, Winner of the 2012 Global eBook Award and Winner of the 2012 International Book Award for Jobs/Careers). He leads career strategy seminars at conferences, business/trade schools, colleges and universities, and U.S. Military Veterans organizations.
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