Hope for the Hopeless: Electronic Charisma

This particular post is one of the hardest for me to write as it runs counter to many deep set feelings I have towards the modern tendency of increased computerization in so much of our lives.

So often I feel that folks focus so much on what is gained by technology without the remotest consideration as to the costs of this technology to society and morality.

That having been said, it is, with extreme reluctance, I acknowledge the wisdom of partial co-operation and capitulation to modern communications in regards to the employment search.

Three visits to Geneva searching for employment at over a dozen schools personally visited has resulted in only a few token responses.

“I know what you are thinking.

“I’m out of work.

I’ve got to go job-huntin’.

So the first thing I have to do is put together my resume.”

Yeah, that used to be true.

In “the old days.”

Before the Internet came on the scene.

Back then, the only way an interviewer could learn much about you was a piece of paper that you yourself wrote – with maybe a little help from your friends – called your resume or CV.

On that paper was a summary of where you had been and all you had done in the past.

From that piece of paper, the employer was supposed to guess what kind of person you are in the present and what kind of employee you would be in the future.

The good thing about this – from your point of view – was that you had absolute control over what went into that piece of paper.

You could omit anything you didn’t want the employer to see, anything that was embarrassing, or anything from your past that you have long since regretted.

Short of their hiring a private detective, or talking to your previous, a prospective employer couldn’t find out much else about you.

That was nice.

But…

Those days are gone forever.

All any prospective employer has to do now is to Google your name and there’s your new resume.

If you have been anywhere near the Internet – and as of 2014 over 87% of adults have – and if you have posted anything on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or YouTube, or if you have your own website or webcasts or photo album or blog, or if you’ve been on anyone else’s Facebook page, every aspect of you may be revealed.

Bye, bye, control.

91% of US employers have visited a job-hunter’s profile on social networks.

69% of employers have rejected some applicants on the basis of what they found.

But…

What is sometimes forgotten is that this works both ways.

68% of the time an employer will offer someone a job because they liked what Google turned up about them.”
Richard N. Bolles, What Color Is Your Parachute?

So I need to follow my own electronic footprints and make certain that charisma rather than infamy are the signposts employers will see.

Time to go a-Google-ing…

May our ghosts in the machine be friendly ones…

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