Do Leaders Deserve to Know Who They Are Hiring?

…or should they voluntarily make hiring decisions based on limited information?

Here’s a sampling of feedback I got since publishing my “Using Twitter to Screen Job Candidates” post yesterday:

  • “Eeeeh bad idea. I am not my social media account. My talents aren’t the same as my tweets.”
  • “The rules of the world we live in should be broken. Next, HR will be monitoring our grocery list…”
  • “Sure, life needs to balanced but that’s not the same as companies making a decision based on something found on twitter.”
  • “It’s intrusive. Online data, like a resume, doesn’t always paint an accurate picture.”
  • “Nope! Let people have a life & interview them.”
  • “Aaron is an idiot!”

Wow!

For better or worse, we live in a very different world compared to 5 years ago when jobs were plentiful, Facebook was for college, and Twitter wasn’t even around.

For some folks, they long for the days when they could go to work at their secure 9 to 5 job and then go home and say racist, sexist, stupid, or offensive things online. Others are not confident with their online personalities. Still others are hoping to get a position they aren’t truly qualified for.

Times have changed.

In an increasingly connected world, smart business leaders, sales reps, recruiters and other relationship driven positions will connect with clients and partner groups through social networking. We live in a transparent world now and if you do anything personal on behalf of a brand or company, your actions on public social media sites may harm your team.

So why shouldn’t I and other business leaders use Twitter to screen candidates that will be using Twitter to develop new business?  Candidates can learn about a modern company prior to making a career decision, why can’t companies learn about their candidates too?  Isn’t that how the best relationships form?  Mutual interest?

It’s just too risky to hire the wrong person.  It’s time that transparency goes both ways.

Please share your rational thoughts on this.

Have a great night,

Aaron@Biebert

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Using Twitter to Screen Job Candidates, Good Idea?

My production team is expanding!  I’m trying a different approach to screening and I’d like your feedback.

In the past, I’ve received hundreds of resumes for entry level positions like this one. It’s too much for busy leaders to dig through effectively, so I’m trying out a different way to screen candidates while recruiting.

They must use Twitter to apply.

I’m also thinking about conducting the initial interview via twitter as well so I can gauge the candidate’s ability to respond, engage, etc. using modern social media communication tools.  It should make the best candidates stick out.

Is this a good idea?  I’d love to hear your thoughts on the strategy and the job posting itself. (Also, read my next post: Crowdsourcing a Hiring Decision?)

Have a great night,

Aaron@Biebert

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Attention: It’s Got to be All or Nothing

I only meet in person to build a stronger relationship.  There’s just one small problem.

Emails, texts, tweets, and Facebook mobile allow us to be at a meeting, meal, bar, or date with a person and still communicate with others who aren’t there.  Because these messages go with us everywhere our phone does, they are hard to ignore.  Luckily, they can be fielded discreetly and quickly.

But should we do it?

The world is rapidly changing and some questions haven’t been fully asked and answered. I think it’s time. Some younger folks don’t even understand how to build face-to-face relationships anymore.

Have we forgotten how to focus on one person at a time?  I know I do sometimes…

Some of my online relationships are just as important as my local ones, but is it possible that frequent interruptions of live conversation or “talking and texting” actually cause damage to a relationship?  Would it be better not to have the dinner at all?

Does a distracted dinner create resentment?

I think it does!

It might be hard, but we need to draw a line in our heads when we enter into a live conversation.  It’s much different than twitter or email where people can wait a few seconds for a response.   Humans aren’t geared that way and I don’t think they ever will be.

We meet in person for a reason.  These days you can just email, call, or Skype someone if you want to talk.  We meet with people to build something stronger.

So let’s do it!

For successful “in person” relationships, your attention has to be all or nothing.

Have a great night,

Aaron@Biebert
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Do You Suffer From “Phantom Tweets?”

I’m on my way home from an unplugged vacation at a ranch near Mt. Rushmore in South Dakota.

What an experience!

There was no coverage for my iPad, iPhone, or MIFI connected laptop.  Not even one bar.  None!  Dark Ages part two.

The odd thing is that my brain continued to spin for a couple days like I was still getting multiple tweets, texts, and emails every minute.  It was as if my brain was running in place waiting for the onslaught of messages that never came.

Do you get “Phantom Tweets” too?

It makes me wonder what is happening to our brains when 8pm Warriors spend all day and night checking emails, texts, tweets, and other messages while watching television, skyping, talking on the phone or chatting with family members.  Our brains must be adapting to this behavior.

Will humanity be changed forever?  Is this a good thing?

All I know is that my brain was acting like it was addicted to connection and I didn’t enjoy being unplugged.  I’m back now, and we’ll just have to wait and see what happens in the coming decades.  Will future generations even want to escape from the connected world?  What’s your take?

Have a great night!

Aaron@Biebert

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6 Levels of Social Media Investment

Recently, I wrote that it was time for leaders to get on board with social media.  Some were confused.

What did I mean?

A few people thought I was advocating for huge social media marketing budgets and ignoring the need for a return on investment (ROI).  I don’t like wasting money, so I need to clarify the difference between opening an account on a social networking channel and doing full-fledged social media marketing campaigns with original content.

There are varying levels of investment.

A sliding social media investment scale starts with simply opening an account and ends when an organization is actively creating content and launching innovative social media marketing.

There is no guarantee of a proportionate return on an increasing investment.  The more you invest, the higher chance that you could be wasting resources.  However, the less you invest, the higher chance that you’re missing out on new opportunities.  The most successful marketing leaders will find the sweet spot for their organizations.

To illustrate, here are the 6 levels as I see them, along with some examples:

Level 0) I can’t find you on Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedin

Level 1) Offering a One Way Communication Channel

Level 2) Listening and Learning

Level 3) Engaging

Level 4) Content Sharing

Level 5) Content Creation

How much do you need to do on Social Media before you begin wasting resources? That is the Billion Dollar question.  Let me know if you come up with the answer for everyone.

What’s your take?

Have a great night,

Aaron@Biebert

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Social Media is More Than Links, Klout, or Followers

In the social media frenzy of getting more friends, followers, Klout, etc. I think some have forgotten about people. I know I do sometimes.

However, aren’t people the whole point of the social web?

In March, I wrote about the 3 Behaviors that are Social Selfish and today I want to add #4:  Wasting time unhelping people who ask for help.

Today, someone with 260,000 followers retweeted my post about the Menards Website Hacking fiasco I discovered.  Very kind of Dave.  One of my other friends Jeremy Holmes thought it was too bad that he didn’t offer the mention with the retweet, so I messaged Dave to ask about it. After all, he had already found it interesting enough to retweet once and it couldn’t hurt to ask if he’d help out.

Here’s what I sent:

“Just a humble request. Can you retweet the Menards blog post with my tweet meme link http://bit.ly/mLYVmJ and @Biebert mention? Thanks!”

This is what I got:

“Apologies, can’t do it. Have to be consistent. We get a TON of special requests, can’t show favoritism. Sorry.”

I didn’t get how someone could call giving credit on a retweet a “special request.” I thought that was just the courteous thing to do.

The warrior side of me came out and I got irritated. Some good friends jumped in to defend the concept of giving credit and what proceeded was an hour long public debate as he lectured me on the standards of giving credit and everyone ganged up on the poor guy. Now we’re both writing blogs about our experience and what we learned.

Here’s my general take on the topic. For me, a simple “No” would have been fine.  I understand how valuable time is, especially to someone who has that many followers. I can only imagine how much contact he has to deal with.  However, what I didn’t understand was saying no to someone in order to save time and then wasting the extra time lecturing them. It’s so much easier just to help people, at least in my smaller world.

It only makes sense.

Here’s why:

  • People still matter. Even though he has a Klout score of 84 and 260,000 followers, people still matter.  Great things happen when you help people.
  • Time matters. If you don’t have time to help someone, don’t lecture them.  It is disengenuous.  In the time it takes to argue, you could seriously make someone’s day.
  • Content matters. If you like the content enough to share it, make sure you help people find the author in a helpful way.  A simple @mention takes 3 seconds.

At the end of the day, social media is still about people.  Sometimes we forget that. I know I do.

Some of the best relationships I have through social media are with regular people that have fewer than 5,000 connections.  I have laughed with them, learned from them, and even cried with them.  Yet I’ve never met them.

People are the magic of social media!

Never forget that.

Have a generous night,


Aaron@Biebert

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Hug a Social Media Curator!

(This post is the 4th part of a five part series about participation in the world of Social Media)

It’s a zoo out there!

I’ve got 45,000 unread emails, 1,750 unread notices in facebook, and countless tweets that come flying by me each day.

The Social Web is a crazy place.  Everywhere you look, “Creators” are busy creating content and “Consumers” are seeking the latest and greatest.  Who makes it all work?

The Social Media Curator.

The word Curator normally applies to a museum executive or someone who manages a collection.  Going back to when I studied Latin, it comes from the word cūrā, meaning to care for or attend to.

Social Media Curators care for and attend to the best of the Social Web.  They save us all time.  They make Web 2.0 worthwhile.

It’s time to hug a social media Curator!

When others click away from something they like and move on, the Curators among us share it, retweet it, bookmark it, list it, or forward it.  When they find people that serve niches, they follow them, list them, and introduce them to the world.

They are the only reason that my twitter stream and Flipboard app actually work. (hint, if you don’t “get” twitter, it’s because you don’t know any curators)

Without Curators, we are stuck digging through the billions of updates each month just to find something worth reading (besides family or celebrity updates).  With curators, the best of the best in our field rises to the top.

It’s time to thank the curators!

Have a great night,

Aaron@Biebert

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Here are some different types of curators I’ve relied on.  Who are yours?  (Please share and I’ll check them out)

Like this article?  Check out  “Web 2.0 – Why Sharing is Caring”  or subscribe to “Thoughts from an 8pm Warrior” via email