The Importance Of On-line
Networking In Job Searching
Do you exist? - by Ron Bates
I had the good fortune of being one of three guest speakers in a recent
90-minute Experts Connection webinar discussion chaired by Netshare CEO
Kathy Simmons this week titled:
Do THEY Know You? Business Networks and Online Presence-Making It Work
Jim Fowler was the first speaker. Jim is Founder & CEO of Jigsaw,
an innovative contact database with over +3 million contacts at over 351,000
companies. I had also mentioned Jigsaw in a previous blog titled: What's
in your networking toolbox? The second speaker was Cindy Kraft, an industry
leading personal branding consultant. I was the last speaker.
Jim Fowler spoke about how on-line database such as Jigsaw can help one's
networking efforts. Cindy Kraft spoke about the importance of having a
branded on line presence.
Cindy started her discussion by raising the question, "If you're
not in Google, do you exist?" She also offered up some interesting
statistics stating, "In a recent survey by Execunet [a career-services
network for executives earning $100,000 a year or more], 63% of recruiters
said they Google a candidate's name prior to talking with them, and almost
half indicated they eliminate a candidate based on their findings. A recent
Harris Poll showed that 23% of individuals Google a colleague prior to
meeting with them. Those statistics will continue to grow ... and grow
rapidly in the next few years."
In a report titled Blog or die?, according to Daiwa securities, Blogging
has emerged from obscurity to mainstream phenomenon in around two years.
Blogging emerged as a phenomenon in around 2003. By February 2005 Daiwa
securities estimated there were around 20 million active blogs with over
500,000 new ones starting every month.
A Google query for the term "blog" returned 254 million results
- ahead of MP3, Television and God. The same survey found 27% of American
Internet users read blogs, 7% blog regularly themselves, and 12% have
posted comments on a blog.
The Fast Company article, Creating a Gem of a Career states, "In
the future, [employers] aren't going to advertise job openings anymore,"
says Warren Bare, CEO and founder of Jobkabob, another job-matching service.
"They'll find you." It's a scary prospect for anyone who has
ever been out of work. But for the agile, well-presented, ever-learning,
constantly networking top performer, it sounds . . . perfect.
ExecuNet, reported in its latest annual survey of the senior-management
job market that 70% of human-resources chiefs say they rely heavily on
referrals and other networking contacts to find candidates for executive
job openings, which are almost never advertised anywhere (on job boards,
In the FORTUNE article titled: Five months of networking, still no new
job - You're doing all the right things to land a great position, but
aren't getting anywhere. What's wrong? Senior writer Anne Fisher states,
"Doing all the right things,…, puts you out ahead of most of
your competition." She then states, "The ExecuNet poll shows
that, while 84% of senior managers agree that broad networks of personal
and professional contacts are crucial to success, just 19% say their own
networks are in "excellent" or "very good" shape."
It's one thing to have a network - it's another thing to have a branded
online presence that effectively communicates who you are and what your
unique value proposition is.
As Cindy Kraft puts it, "Think of the power your branded online
identity brings into that interview. They probably already like you based
on the connection they feel - which is based on who they believe you to
already be. You want to be visible with a clear and compelling message
to the people who need to know about you. You can't compete on being average
or a mere commodity. And you can't compete today - and definitely not
in the future - if you can't be found."
A number of executives now have their own blogs and dedicated personal
websites that attempt to showcase their unique value proposition. You
can create all the online content you want, but if it doesn't index high
in search returns it really doesn't help you that much.
So by this point, you might be asking, "So how do you start creating
a presence that can actually be found on the Internet?"
You might have guessed what I spent my 30 minutes discussing.
Ecademy is the best way to not only start creating content that will
index high in search engine returns (e.g., your Ecademy Profile and blogs).
As I've also described in previous blogs (e.g., This is some fun stuff!!
- Building a Personal Internet Presence and Is your Networking Profile
useless? ) Ecademy is a priceless tool for being able to create a branded
online identity by also driving off Ecademy content you've created (e.g.,
your own dedicated personal website, articles, blogs, etc.) to index higher
in search engine returns as well.
I'm always happy to discuss this with anyone that would like to do so.
Executive Advantage Group