Today’s guest post is by Kelly Giles, social media strategist for OptimalResume.com.
I’m one of those Web 2.0 job search success stories you keep hearing about. I graduated from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill on May 10, and I started working full time as a social media strategist for OptimalResume.com on May 26.
I’d be lucky to have this job in any economy, but especially in this one. It matches my interests and skills, the company and environment are great, and I’m able to contribute and learn a lot.
How did Web 2.0 help? Here’s a hint: Even though Optimal Resume is based in Durham, N.C. (where I’ve lived for the past two years), my connection to the company started in Maine.
At a career crossroads
When I joined Twitter in January, I was debating between going to law school and venturing into the “real world,” and my bio said so. It also said I was looking for a way to be strategic, creative and efficient.
I started tweeting what was on my mind, which included everything from law school essay topics to job-search strategies to how I thought UNC’s Career Services could improve.
That’s how Sherry Mason, a career counselor at Bowdoin College in Maine, found me. One day I tweeted that I thought career services should teach personal branding, and she messaged me to ask what else I thought they should do.
A few days after I joined Twitter, I started blogging about Web 2.0 job-search strategies for college students (thinking I should put all the research I was doing to good use), and I asked Sherry for her input about content.
As luck would have it, she not only helped with that, but as a former practicing lawyer, she talked with me about my law school decision. She’s one of the people who helped me decide it wasn’t for me.
A key introduction
Once that decision was made, I kept tweeting about articles that interested me, and that were relevant to my job search. Sherry and I also kept in touch, tweeting and e-mailing occasionally.
One of those tweets introduced me to Optimal Resume’s COO on Twitter. From there, we exchanged Twitter messages and set up a meeting. Within a week, I had a job.
My story is a lesson in how it pays to be authentic and active in your social media use. Yes, I joined Twitter and started blogging because all the job-search articles said those were two keys to jump-starting a job search, but I didn’t blog and tweet what I thought employers wanted to hear, or just advertise that I needed a job.
I also didn’t talk about how I was procrastinating on term papers or eating a ham and turkey sandwich.
I stayed “on brand,” while talking about things that interested me, things that were naturally on my mind, and I found a job (or a job found me, depending on which way you look at it) that matches.
Image credit, NoahGolan, via iStock
What other Web 2.0 job search success stories have you heard?