In JibberJobber we have problems. That’s why I have a team of professionals who I pay. We all work together to identify problems (sometimes our users help us a lot – thank you problem finders :)), figure out what the root issues are, and then work to make the problems go away.
Sometimes what we do is responsive. For example, recently we learned that there is a tiny glitch with *some* email2log emails. UGH. We are responding to that like it’s a five alarm fire because it’s the most important feature we have. Also, a user let us know that what he’s seeing on Reminders and on the Action Item Widget and on the mobile app all seem to be a little different… again, a five alarm fire. Get out the hoses, and get this fixed, NOW!
There are other responsive things we work on… a career coach (thanks Thea!) reported that there is an issue on the general search… when you do a search we show a dropdown of possible hits. The problem is that the dropdown is partially hidden by the menu. Oops. This isn’t five alarm fire, functionality-wise, because it doesn’t have to do with bad data, or messing up data. But, first-impression-wise it does not look good at all. “If they can’t do that, or if they didn’t notice that, what else are they messing up? MY DATA??” Functionally, it’s a no-alarm fire. But with regard to branding (reputation management, building confidence in the user), it really could be a no-big-deal thing or it could be a “they don’t pay attention to details, I don’t trust them, and wont’ recommend them” thing.
Other problems we work on are proactive. There are a bunch of new features to work on that we have listed out, with priorities. Things like creating a… well, I don’t want to get anyone’s hopes up, so I’m not going to list them here… but we have years of work to do to make JibberJobber more awesome.
One of the biggest problems we have… the next BIG problem to solve, is what is called “onboarding.” That is, someone signs up for JibberJobber, how do we help them get enamored (and even hooked on) the system? Some people dive right in, and get it, but too many people (one is too many) login and then scratch their head and say “I just don’t get it. I’m going back to my Excel spreadsheet.”
Of course, we can’t help everyone. There are certain people that will love JibberJobber, and the structure and organization, and there are others who are just going to do better with notepad and pencil. That’s fine. But there are plenty of people, I think, that we could lend a helping hand to, and baby-step walk them towards becoming real users.
So that’s our big gap right now, and that’s what we’re actively working on. Along with a bunch of other things, of course.
Now, it’s your turn… let’s turn this concept over to you, as a job seeker.
What’s your gap?
- Identify the problem? (“I am not getting any responses to my networking emails”)
- Define the root issues? (“I’m sending to the wrong people, or my messages are too generic, or my messages are too jargony, etc.”)
- Fix the problem, at the root level? (Change the text of your emails, and make sure you are customizing each message, and that you are sending the messages to the right people, not just blasting them out to anyone).
Seems simple, right? It is, conceptually.
We are talking about simple problem solving. Realize that if you skip any of these three steps, you aren’t doing yourself a favor. You really have to do each of these… skip #1 and you might spend too much time on #2 and #3 for something that either doesn’t exist, or isn’t a significant problem. Skip #2 and you might just fix symptoms, but not the root. Skip #3 and you are just an idea person, a worrier, a hoarder of stress, without ever cleaning anything up.
Take some time, today and this weekend, and figure out what your job search and networking problems are, and then work through this simple framework to address them.
It’s how we move forward.
And remember, it doesn’t all have to get fixed this week… you have plenty of time, but just make sure you are making progress.