Winners of the Month – Much to learn from this

January 24th, 2007

Jobster - Meet Your FutureNote: Lots to write here, not enough space. I was planning on giving this award to 60 people this month, which would be worth $3,600. Alas, it only goes to a fraction of that. Read on…

So I’ve been following the Jobster layoffs for a few weeks (sorry to bring it up again – it had pretty much died down), and found a most intriguing thread on Matt Martone’s blog. The big question boils down to “So these guys get terminated and we’re supposed to jump to action to help them? What about the billions of others that lose their jobs?” You can see my response in there, the 17th comment. I think its pretty brilliant :p

It doesn’t really matter what your position is, the bottom line is there are about 60 people that have been put out on the street (that’s what I heard, not sure what the final numbers were), and they have to find a new gig. It is interesting because Jobster is the company to watch, and it has been watched. The CEO gets criticized for his blog style (I think his style is great, and he makes no excuses for the transparency (although he does kind of apologize for calling Monster a crap product), and news like this layoff has lots of people talking (lots of recruiters that blog, that is).

I’m not taking a position. I think its a cool tool, and its definitely different. But back to the winner of the month… I have found a number of ex-Jobster professionals that I want to feature as winners this month. Note something different this month is the use of their LinkedIn profiles, which I need to blog about in another post. There would have been 60 awards this month, if all 60 of them “got it.” But read on, for the interesting outcome.

Dana Bos – Co-founder and Editor of ThreeImaginaryGirls.com. Freelance Content Guru. Dana’s LinkedIn profile and her ThreeImaginaryGirls are totally complementary and scream “I know my stuff! I know web content. I know podcasting. I know how to communicate online.” The fact that she had the role of “Website Producer/Content Manager at Jobster” tells me that she could cross industries easily. You need to check out her LinkedIn profile and constrast it with her Jobster profile – it is very interesting (and something to consider based on your target companies)! While she doesn’t have a blog or her own personal branding website, she’s posted these profiles on comments of at least one other blog.

Rob Humphrey – talent professional – if you want to see You Get It in action, go check out Rob’s profile. He blogs in multiple places (DigitalRecruiter, TriangleAtWork and CareerCowboy) and uses the SquareSpace.com very effectively to present himself and his achievements. You can’t spend 10 minutes on this guy’s sites and NOT get an appreciation for his breadth/depth. Terrific stuff, presented very, very well.

Sara Elkins – Strategic Account Manager – no website, no blog but she’s obviously spent some time on her LinkedIn profile – it looks very nice (read: its way more fleshed out than mine). This is a topic for another post but you can learn a lot by comparing your LinkedIn profile with hers, as she has all the right stuff. If you are in the mode of improving yours, check hers out and then read this post about improving your profile by Guy Kawasaki.

Heather Gray – Sales and Marketing VP – this took a little poking around – I got her resume from her Jobster profile page, and then found a blog address (it isn’t active). But she does have a LinkedIn profile – yahoo! Interestingly, her resume does a ton more for her personal brand than her LinkedIn profile – but at least she has one. I’ve just looked at 10 other Jobster profiles that don’t have a LinkedIn profile, or a blog, or a website, or… well, anything more than their Jobster profile. Heather can do some more work here, probably have an excellent blog a la Kent Blumberg style – and be the thought-leader in this area – her resume is super impressive and I’d love to learn more about her breadth and depth through a blog … hint hint!

Ariel Stallings – two writers in one – on her website there’s a section to go to see about being an author, and one about being a copywriter. And she advertises other services (like blog consultation — hm, I wonder what she’d do to change my blog!). Her website is great, has lots of information about her passions, skills etc. This is a good time to highlight the way Jobster has profiles – its kind of like an interview where she has questions, and she has responses. These are NOT dry questions, mind you. They are more like “casual conversation” or regular conversation that you would get into the first time you met.

Kalindi Kunis – Marketing Communications and Product Management – Kalindi had a resume on her jobster profile that had a link to her LinkedIn profile. Feel like I’m stretching here, as far as substantiating her personal brand? I do too… but that’s okay – it goes along with the theme this month. Her LinkedIn profile has interesting information, and I learned a lot about her from the resume+LinkedIn profile. At least she has two instances of using the web to help her brand…

and finally… that’s it. That’s all I found :(. Out of supposedly 60 reductions (love the term?), only 40 had their profiles on the Jobster site in this category. And out of these 40, this is all I found that had any substantiation of their personal brand.

I’m amazed to not see more blogs. Actually, I was amazed that so many (past) employees of a web 2.0 company that has a very active CEO blogger haven’t done much to substantiate their personal branding online. Before I went through the 40 profiles I thought I’d have a TON of reading to do, going over each of their blogs. But I guess the reality is that too many people are spending all of their time on their job and no time on their career management.

Sorry for the morbid note, I won’t end on that!

For all those mentioned here, you get the exceptional prizes of a cyber-high-five, a link on my blogroll (if you have a site – so far this is just Rob and Ariel), and six months of premium access to JibberJobber! Good luck to each of you (and those not mentioned here), and please continue to pay attention to your career management even after you land your next dream job!

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25 responses to “Winners of the Month – Much to learn from this”

  1. Sounds like they should be reading the responses to your blog carnival.

  2. Scot Herrick says:

    Jason,

    This is an interesting post and I hope that the people in it appreciate the fine gift that is there for them.

    I have not found many “brand building” sites for individual people and this post gives some great examples of how people can turn a resume into much more than a resume. I have been thinking about how to go about doing so on my personal site and change it from promoting my blogs. These were good examples of how to go about doing that.

    If you see others in your travels in the blogosphere, I hope you write about them here.

  3. Jason says:

    Scot – good comments – you are right, I have been looking for this also. There are some firms that do it (see the blogroll on the left, under Personal Branding), and then go check out my other monthly winners (very interesting) under the Monthly Winners link on the left.

  4. Sara Elkins says:

    Thanks for the great comments! Positive advertising is always a PLUS!

  5. For my money, Ziggs.com remains a great place to build a web profile. I’ve been extremely happy with the exposure my Ziggs profile is bringing me. Probably more than my blog in the early months, although my blog is catching up.

  6. […] The subject for this post, however, is one of those jolts that periodically remind us what are the more important things to focus on. Its all well and good to perform well, keeping our current managers and customers happy with the services we give them, but it critical to keep an eye on that future supply line. Jason Alba talks about how few of the 60 layoffs were actively promoting their own career which might not have been surprising, were they not at at the career management social networking service Jobster. […]

  7. I think one of the more impressive aspects of Sara Elkins LinkedIn profile is an interesting spin on “power networking”. Many networkers try to score the possible highest number of connections, whereas the power in Sara’s profile is the number of recommendations that colleagues have made for her. That’s a very strong message for anybody considering hiring her, especially when you consider them as a percentage of her number of connections (25%).
    I wish her fortune, even though she is clearly making her own luck here ๐Ÿ˜€

  8. Rob Humphrey says:

    Jason–Thanks for the mention. I wil take you up on the offer to use your career mgt tools. Great point by Arthur.

  9. Heather L Gray says:

    I thought your post was extremely well thought out and presented. You obviously did your homework. I was not familiar with the work you have been doing or your blog, but enjoyed reading it and hearing your thoughts. I’ll be interested in reading more in the future. You make some excellent points.

    On the blog front, I have to admit I have been somewhat hesitant to jump into the fray– but there are far too many good business reasons not to do it at this point. Shouldn’t let my apprehension over that first blog post slow me down–time to take the leap and go “all-in”.

    I have been watching the development of blogs quite intently and am an active “lurker” behind the scenes– one of the silent majority. Perhaps in the future you will see a little more presence there from me. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    In the meantime, thank you for your kind words and your thoughts. Truly appreciate it. Thought it was an excellent post and am looking forward to seeing more.

    Best – Heather

  10. Greg says:

    Surprising the lack of blogs for sure. These guys are very much in vogue right now. They should leverage it. Too many people use LinkedIn and think “OK, now I’ve done my work.” But LinkedIn, good as it is, is the tip of the iceburg. There’s Eyebulge.com (which is like Jobster on steroids), Myspace.com, blogging, any number of forums, and, of course even Jobster.

    I have all of the above and then some. It takes about 6 minutes all told to get started, and blogging takes what…15 minutes a day?

  11. John Atkins says:

    Jason,

    Interesting post … insightful and thought provoking, but I like Heather\’s term of being a \”silent lurker.\”

    It seems to me that this term represents the 90% majority of people on the web today. And while you may think that a personal brand is the way to advertise yourself into the next position, the old traditional networking via email (or gf, offline) is still the very much the norm (I know, how web 1.0). Since being laid off from Jobster, I have been networking with a lot of people who either dont know blogs or just totally distrust them. Personal branding and anything web 2.0 — well, that\’s just way beyond the pale. Admittedly, these folks are, for the most part, not on the West Coast, old enough to have seen The Clash in concert, do not know an RSS feed from grass seed, but … they are in management positions and executive suites. And they are the ones who set policy at their companies.

    Sure, times will change, and blogging will reign supreme! But just like the 1995 pronouncement that \”broadband\” would overtake the Internet near you in a year, it\’s going to take 10 years, maybe more for blogging to be the mainstream accepted practice for people to find a job.

    The resume is not dead yet …

    my cynical best,
    john

  12. Jason says:

    Kent – Ziggs.com – cool, I hadn’t heard of them before but that is great info.

    Arthur – I agree with your comment on the recommendations – although I have to chew on this a little bit. I noticed she had quite a few but my first impression wasn’t as favorable as yours. I’ll blog on it later :)

    Greg – SUPER interesting comment “these guys are very much in vogue right now” … I had not thought about that. Though, aside from the other tools you mention, you didn’t list JibberJobber :( :(

    John – I agree with everything you say. Everything. The purpose of this award is to recognize people that use Web2.0 to substantiate their personal brand. Last month was a guy who isn’t looking for a job. Its not all, or only, about a job search. Its about (new term here from Anna Farmery) taking a 2D brand and turning it into a 3D brand.

    There’s plenty of room in the blogsphere. As a matter of fact, I was with Kent Blumberg and some other bloggers a few weeks ago and we asked how many C-level leaders are blogging. If I remember correctly, he said none. Now, I’m talking about c-level people that blog on their own accord.

    That is what I’m suggesting to Heather (and I find her reply VERY acceptable). There is a ton of room in this space. Develop your brand NOW, not when you need it. It could be through blogs. It could be through Ziggs, or LinkedIn or SquareSpace (like Rob’s). But the idea is that people can learn more about your breadth, depth and passions by googling (sp?) you.

    As I said, I totally agree with you. It’s not the silver bullet – but I think its a great way to start to take control of your own personal brand.

    I realize most people won’t do it – I’ll even talk until I’m blue in the face. People won’t do it. So, I’ll keep looking, month after month, for good examples. It will be very interesting to see where we are at in 10 years.

    Heather, Rob, Sara and John – best wishes – and the same to your colleagues. People that read this kind of blog are here because they can relate to (how shall I say this tactfully) … getting terminated. That’s where I came from.

  13. I don’t think the number of C level bloggers is “none” but it is pretty darn small so far.

  14. Greg says:

    Jason, sorry not to have mentioned jibberjobber.com, and its an excellent point and here’s why: John used the awesome term “personal branding” and it never really ends. (John, you just had such a good comment there, I was really impressed by it). We’re in the pioneering phase right now, so even if I offered a seemingly exhaustive list, it would be insufficient….well, today it may be ok, but someday I am convinced we will, as individuals, look at ourselves more “under the microscope” like a company would. The examples I gave were just that: examples of sites that offer personal branding opportunities. I certainly did not intend to snub!

  15. Jason says:

    Actually Greg, I was looking at that list more of a “tools” list than a set of tools specifically for personal branding. JibberJobber does not help with personal branding, its more about managing the important relationships in your career (or, career transition, either way). So you are right on there… my bad.

  16. Fred says:

    Jason,

    This was a wake up call for me. I have landed a great new job and have been so busy I am letting my career management get stale real fast.

    Thanks for all your great daily blogs!

    Fred

  17. Jason says:

    Fred – this is why I blog – to just nudge or remind us about what we should be doing :) Thank you!

  18. 3 ways LinkedIn could help its users….

    In response to my open query about whether LinkedIn actually matters, Scott Allen over at LinkedIntelligence points out that there are many people who are getting hired through LinkedIn.
    Scott makes a good point — LinkedIn certainly hasn’t …

  19. […] I was on the phone with January You Get It winner Rob Humphrey and he said something like “wouldn’t it be cool if there was an application where people could rank and comment on local companies, and job seekers could see what others thought about them?” I’m sure there are websites out there to do that… this is a feature that we included in JibberJobber from early on, and it’s available to regular and premium users. Here’s how it works: […]

  20. […] So I’ve been looking for some examples of how to build a personal brand page or two on the Internet. I hit the jackpot when Jason Alba over at JibberJobber posted his monthly You Get It awards for the month of January. In it, he profiles what a good number of people laid off at Jobster have for their personal branding out on the Internet. I’ve visited their sites and am now in the process of figuring out what to do with mine. […]



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