Job Hunting, A film, Recruiters Using Social Networking

I didn’t have time to post anything yesterday (which is not to say that I intend to post an entry each and every night), because I instead chose to help a friend prepare his resume and negotiate the job search engines. Although the job search has become increasingly electronic, it is nevertheless my belief that the most effective means of finding a job is some permutation on knocking on doors. Perhaps especially now, when most job hunters are spending significant capital and time on internet searches and social networking sites, the candidate who is kicking down doors is all the more likely to get noticed.

Elissa and I also watched Pedro Almadovar’s film “La Mala Educacion (Bad Education)”. Although I’m familiar with the film maker’s work, I don’t think I had ever watched a whole Almadovar film. “La Mala Educacion” was incredible. It was very reminiscent of Hitchcock and made several overt references to film noir. This was made all the more ironic because of the panoply of bright colors Almadovar uses. Gael Garcia Bernal plays a transvestite living out a meta-reality, simoultaneously trying to find, and reconcile with, his dead brother.

La Mala Educacion

What starts as a quirky, little movie gains a lot of momentum and by the end is a film noir tour de force done on Almodovar’s own characteristically unconventional terms. If anyone sees this and wants to discuss it, I’ve got a lot to say, surprising, I know.

Lastly, Elissa just forwarded me the text of a National Law Journal article detailing the Web-scouring practices of law firm recruiters. I’d love to link to it, but the article is for subscriber’s only. It is a sobering reminder that what is put out on the Web becomes a permanent record, searchable by all. While the article takes a pretty progressive view of this phenomenon, i.e., recruiters and candidates both have responsibilities to the type of information found and disseminated on the Web, not all information is reliable, not all information is known about or was approved by the person who is the subject of such information, some Web presences can make a positive impact on recruiters, and that this is only the beginning.

While all good points, I would suggest that to hide one’s profile from the Web is a less than optimal solution in that juicy information just has a knack for getting out and playing gatekeeper, even to one’s own information, is always a costly endeavor. More valuable, or maybe more naive, is the goal of being the type of person that chooses to have a high degree of transparency in their lives. I have always found that good friends and family are the best deterrent for making poor decisions, and if you let them know what poor decision you are contemplating taking, they are usually not overly-shy about telling you what an idiotic thing to do that would be. I take a certain amount of (foolish?) pride in believing that all my decisions, good and bad, I have reconciled with and feel no sense of shame should they be made public. For instance, my dad has a picture of me picking my nose (perils of living with a photographer), and I am sure any day now he will post that picture for the world to see.

My point, I suppose, is this: The law of averages guarantees that anyone who has ever worked at a corporation for a significant term has at one time or another accidentally replied to a group of people with sensitive information that was intended for just one individual. From experience I can say the panic is immediate, the chagrin is deep, and, no matter how hard you look, there is no “Undo” button. If you are like me, then this has happened to you on more than one occasion. The trick, I think, is not to develop an elaborate, fool-proof safeguard system that will ensure you never mess up (Although, I’m looking for one of those if anyone is selling). It is instead to become the kind of person that writes the kind of email that is appropriate no matter who the receipient may be, intentionally or not.

In addition, to shy away from the social networking technology that is defining Web 2.0 is to relegate yourself to a space that is quickly becoming an anachronism. Microsoft’s newest offering, Microsoft Office Sharepoint Server, promises to reinvent every company intranet by leveraging the same collaboration technologies that make Facebook, LinkedIn, Friendster, etc. so popular in the first place. This technology will not be the sole property of frivolous social networking sites for much longer.

I apologize for the preachiness (it’s late), and the length (I promised Elissa a longer post), but, if you have, then thanks for bearing with me. This post is a little scattershot, but with around 100 hits a day, and the majority of viewers subscribed to the RSS feed, I didn’t want to lose momentum.

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