The Quality of Thinking

When new bloggers ask for advice, I often say ‘it’s not the quality of writing, it’s the quality of thinking’ – I’m sure that people read blogs to be enlightened, to see something that inspires them and gets them to look at things in a different way.

Regular readers of this blog joined me on the journey to find a new job earlier in the year, and I often wrote of my frustrations with companies within the recruiting industry who weren’t looking beyond the traditional methods and ways of thinking. With the challenges that our industry faces to source, attract, retain and develop the right talent, and to service the demands of shifting organisational models, it always struck me as strange that so few owners, directors and managers embraced the possibility of doing things in a different way.

It was the ability to look at the new and unchartered that so excited me about the opportunity with Jobsite UK. I sensed during my talks with them that there was a real passion and desire to bring fresh and innovative thinking to the recruiting industry, whether that was through written or live content, and to be not just the conduit of this but to be at the very heart of the conversation. Continue reading “The Quality of Thinking”

My #TruLondon Journey : from virgin to the sponsor’s lounge

Can’t believe it was only 15 months ago that I made my way through the security procedures at the Barclays tower in Canary Wharf and was propelled skywards (was it 25 floors, 30 floors?) to the first #trulondon.

Have to say that there was certain nervousness, even apprehension…there would be all these people that (barring a couple of old colleagues) I only knew as avatars and 140 character soundbites. Of course there was nothing to fear…as soon as the conversations started it seemed like the most natural thing in the world to sit in a group and listen, absorb, chip in and generally immerse yourself in all this social learning malarkey.

Flip forward three months and, my #tru virginity having been well and truly lost, I went to the next event to help lead tracks and generally meet a whole bunch of people from the UK, US and Europe and talk all things social and recruiting. And what a great event it was…ideas and conversation flowing, new friends made and a real sense of community helping to overcome the odd…er, shall we say…organisational blip ;o)

Twelve months later and it’s time for #trulondon 3. The event has grown and developed, gaining a whole life and culture of its own. This time round there is a dizzying array of tracks and masterclasses, live streams and webinars, with some truly influential thought leaders attending.

And my role has changed too. Having gone from virgin to veteran, I shall now be attending the third event as a representative of the platinum sponsor Jobsite. Like many who were there back in November 2009 for the first event, I have now moved from eavesdropping the conversation to being part of it.

When I wrote a blog previewing #trulondon2 I drew parallels with the Velvet Underground, Andy Warhol and the ‘All Tomorrows Parties’ series of events. The Velvet Underground comes to mind again thinking of my journey. A (still) highly influential band, it is usually said that whilst not many people bought their first album, most of those who did then started their own bands, hence starting an art rock movement. Maybe the first #trulondon has proved to be  a similar catalyst for the advancement of social media in recruitment?

Can’t wait for the show to start!

(My previous #trulondon blogs :

Do Recruiters Really Get Social Media?

TruLondon and the Power of Twitter

Networking, Learning but still got them Talking Gen Y Blues )

King of the Wild Frontier

‘The future’s not what you see, it’s not where you’ve been at all’ (Foals, 2010)

I started my social job hunt 5 weeks ago. I wasn’t sure where it would lead, but I knew that I wanted a new, challenging role within the recruitment industry…a role that would combine a commitment to quality service and delivery, of making a difference and adding value, with social media. The latter was important to me as I have seen during the last 2 years how the reach, engagement, connectivity and possibilities of social media have begun to impact on the recruitment industry.

Like most 3rd party recruiters I assumed that this role would come from within an agency or an in-house role. After all, who else is there?!!

In my last blog I talked about the daily conversation that goes on around talent attraction and development, social recruiting and social sourcing, and how agency recruiters seem unwilling to be part of it.

It became quite apparent during my chats with a range of niche agencies that not only is there an unwillingness to be part of this conversation, there seems to be obliviousness to them even taking place. As one director told me…

‘You could really add value here with your social networking knowledge and abilities…but we’re not really ready for that…to be honest we’ve yet to be convinced that social media will have an impact on our business or the recruitment industry’

…if you’re not in the conversation, then you don’t know what everyone else in the industry is talking about. Or to put it another way…You’ve got to be in it to win it!

To a lot of third party recruiters there is no-one else in the industry…just them, their competitors, clients and potential clients.

Job boards, LinkedIn, RPOs, direct sourcing teams, Research houses and new model offerings?

Tools, barriers, roadblocks…rarely partners or clients.

In every interview these topics were touched on…and often dismissed. No-one was looking beyond this quarter’s figures, last week’s new briefings or today’s portal delivered vacancy updates. Interviews were rarely about what I could do in the future but more focused on raking over the coals of recent months…not about what I can do for them, but about what I did for someone else.

Yet when I spoke to some of the other businesses who make up the recruitment industry’s rich tapestry – like those I mentioned earlier – I heard plans, ideas and collaborations; I sensed energy, passion and real optimism.  And most of this came from the possibilities opened up by social media.

Throughout the 5 weeks, one company and one opportunity stood out. It offered the chance to really provide the capacity and focus to help grow their online presence, with social media channels being the key platforms. An award winning business dedicated to communicating with, not at, their audience, and passionate about the conversation.

They connected with me through social media and our talks have all been about the future, about plans and visions, a belief in embracing emerging channels to create a better business.

I have long believed that great content is the key to any social media strategy, and that the role of community manager will be vital to any business looking to really grow in future…as vital as sales and product development.

This is new and exciting, the kind of challenge that I was hoping to find. The landscape is wild and unchartered, new frontiers waiting to be conquered.

So after 5 weeks my job search has ended and I am really proud to be the new Content and Community Manger

…at Jobsite UK  

I’m even going to try to bring recruiters into the conversation..

..wish me luck!