Using Twitter When Job Hunting

Today’s topic, using Twitter when job hunting…

First of all, it’s important to understand the employers may find information on potential candidates on-line, and search engines LOVE social networking / social media sites. Your FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube… postings are being viewed by hiring companies.

There are a lot of articles out there about how to use twitter in general, and how to use it for job hunting. I’ve condensed some of the best information I’ve found into a few simple helpful hints. Enjoy!

  • Use your real name as your twitter name (or at least include it). This helps search engines find you.
  • Create a professional profile with a good “One Line Bio”. You can also create a background image that includes more information about yourself or your skills.
  • Follow other twitter users who are leaders in your industry, as well as companies you’re targeting for employment.
  • Employers know that people tweet about things that are important to them. Make sure to tweet about any work or industry related projects you’re doing, articles you’ve read, or anything else positive that you want employers to know you care about.
  • Don’t post tweets that may be seen as too controversial or contain information that may reflect poorly on you to a potential employer.
  • If you have a video resume or video profile, you can share it by simply posting a tweet with a link to your YouTube video (use tinyurl to shorten the link), or you can use tools like TwitVid, Twiddeo or several others.

Thanks for reading and happy job hunting. Please feel free to comment on your own Twitter experiences while job hunting.

Confident Posture – why and how

Today’s topic is on Posture.

You can tell so much about a person, (how they’re feeling, how they feel about themselves, their surroundings…). It can even effect how others feel about you and respond to you!  So A confident posture is important.

To help achieve good posture while looking relaxed and confident:

Take a deep breath and pull your shoulders back while sitting (or standing) up straight. Then relax your shoulders and exhale. Do this more than once if you’re particularly nervous. It gives you a burst of confidence and allows for good breathing. It can also help you to avoid or reduce feelings of nervousness and discomfort.

While attended a networking event in St. Louis, I ran into a friend I’ve known for a while. He suggested that you take both arms and put them straight up in the air while taking a deep breath. (come on, those of you reading this… get those arms up). Now slowly drop your arms down to your sides while exhaling. (feels good, doesn’t it?). This is also a very effective way to relax and show good posture, though you may not want to do this one in the lobby while waiting for your interviewer. ;)

Video Resume Standards

I was researching social media trends, hiring practices and how video resumes fit into the picture  and found one recurring complaint about video resumes… a lack of standards.

When you submit your resume to an employer, there are certain guidelines you’ll want to follow to ensure your resume is effective and taken seriously. For example, you probably wouldn’t stick a big purple crossword puzzle in the middle of your resume, nor would you talk about grandma’s big BBQ family reunion. You list your skills and job experience, probably give some examples of successful projects…

Even at an interview there are certain standards. Bring copies of your resume and a pen. Dress up. Don’t talk about controversial topics such as politics or religion. Research the company and be prepared to ask a few questions.

However, people do strange things in video resumes in the name of “standing out”.

First of all, simply providing a video resume IS standing out. There’s no need to write your own sitcom for the company’s viewing pleasure.

Below are a few Do’s and Don’ts for producing a video resume that will allow you to stand out, without wasting the viewers time (and yours).

DO

Plan what you want to say;
A storyboard or script will help you organize your video. Reading it from a teleprompter can save you from having to memorize, and allows you to make good eye contact.  For an interview style video, consider the questions you’d like to be asked before getting in front of the camera.

Introduce yourself;
Start by mentioning your name (first & last), and then tell a little summary about yourself. Let the employer know who you are and why they should continue watching this video.

Focus on results;
Tell employers what QUANTIFIABLE RESULTS you’ve delivered for other companies or on other projects & what you can do for them.

Focus on your professional endeavors;
It’s ok to talk about volunteer work you do in your spare time or recreational hobbies if they show positive qualities that the company may appreciate, but focus primarily on your professional skills and experience.

Be concise;
Keep your video between 1-3 minutes long. (Less than 2 minutes is best). Time flies when you are saying and recording it, but not when a potential employer is watching. Anything over 3 minutes is just too long!

Be thankful;
Don’t forget to end your video by thanking the employer for their time and consideration.

Provide contact information;
If they liked what they saw, make sure they can contact you.

Practice, Practice, Practice;
Get used to talking about yourself with confidence. If you don’t sound natural, change the script. Practice in front of a mirror to get a feel for your facial expressions.

DON’T

Do Not Just start right in;
Take a moment to establish who you are & why they should continue to watch. The first 20 seconds are the most important.

Do Not Tell your life story;
Keep the video short and the information relevant to the job & industry you are applying for. One of the worst things you can do is ramble on or try too hard to make the person get to know you.

Do Not Use Run-on Sentences;
When speaking, a higher level of enthusiasm occurs at the beginning and end of the sentence. Using long, drawn-out sentences eliminates voice inflection and may not keep the viewers attention. Use short sentences when writing your script to keep enthusiasm and interest high.

Do Not Forget to thank the viewer for watching;
And invite them to contact you for further discussion

I hope this helps.