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January 2007
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March 2007

You're So Vain...You Probably Think This Blog Is About You

The title for this post comes from my wife Franki, who heard me singing that awful song after we watched How To Lose A Guy In Ten Days while she had the flu.

It got me thinking about a piece of advice I give all business blogging clients.  Be careful what you write.

I'm sorry to disappoint those of you who were looking for a juicy story, but this is the advice column, and I never, never give veiled statements online.  The risk of talking about clients and having them read your blog is too great, and you can ruin your business if you get the reputation for yakking about your partners and clients.  Save that for your MySpace page (just kidding!).

But not writing about current clients is not enough.  You have to avoid writing about current clients, past clients, and even mythical clients when you blog.  Did I lose anyone?

Mythical clients, or future clients, are people too.  If you create a story out of thin air, or write a how-to that has never happened to you on your blog, you still run the risk of alienating a future client.  Lemme explain.  No, is too much.  Lemme Sum Up.

Continue reading "You're So Vain...You Probably Think This Blog Is About You" »


New Free Job Postings in St Louis

Three new job postings this week,

Northrup Grumman has both Java/Websphere programmers and Senior J2EE web development positions at the Post Office facility downtown through The Employment Solution, while Hewlett Packard is looking for senior Sales Reps for the St Louis area.

If you are a corporate or independent recruiter looking to post real, live jobs for free in St Louis, check out how at the landing page for Free.StlRecruiting.com.


Using Search Engines To Find Resumes

Jim Stroud, a sourcing guru, blogging afficianado, podcast show host, and all around good guy, has launched a white paper on sourcing resumes from the internet.

He was looking around for a definitive piece on the subject, saw that it didn't exist, and then decided to write it.

And you get all the benefits.

Some of his topics:

  • MOST POPULAR FORMATS FOR RESUMES (IN GENERAL)
  • MOST POPULAR FORMATS FOR TECHNICAL RESUMES
  • TOP 10 INDUSTRIES BY RESUMES SOURCED ON LIVE
  • TOP 10 INDUSTRIES BY RESUMES SOURCED ON GOOGLE
  • TOP 10 INDUSTRIES BY RESUMES SOURCED ON YAHOO
  • POPULAR TOP-LEVEL DOMAINS FOR RESUMES
  • POPULAR INDUSTRY KEYWORDS MENTIONED ON RESUMES
  • QUANTITY OF RESUMES FOUND ON SEARCH ENGINES
  • MOST POPULAR WAYS TO SPELL “CV”
  • MOST POPULAR WAYS TO SPELL “RESUME”
  • MOST OVERLOOKED FILETYPES FOR RESUMES (IN GENERAL)

Jim gets the StlRecruiting stamp of approval, as he is always personally helpful to me, so if you are looking for ways to look for key resumes without paying job boards to do so, here's your chance.  Also check out Jim Stroud.com


St Louis Business Blog: Alpha Packaging

James Bielefeldt, a friend of ours and fellow blogger, let us know about a new business blogger in town, Alpha Packaging.

Their blog is Message in a Bottle, and they cover information for the packaging industry. 

The Internet doesn’t have to be impersonal, though, and this new blog from Alpha is our attempt to keep the lines of communication open for our friends and associates who are as busy as we have become. I’ve never been much of a “blogger” myself. I don’t spend a lot of time reading blogs on the Internet; I don’t subscribe to RSS feeds (I don’t even know how to do that!); and I’ve certainly never written a blog before. But I think this forum presents an interesting opportunity to engage in a dialogue with those who know us well, and those we’d like to know better.

Good luck Alpha.   You're off to a good start.


Video Resumes and a Blog, Blog, Blog, Blog World.

I had the chance to talk with a reporter  from Time two weeks ago about video resumes.  Browsing the comments over at Magic Pot of Jobs, I got in a tiff with Tiffany, and when the reporter called, Tiffany sent her my way.

After a good chat with Lisa Cullen, I passed her on to George Lenard, the Employment Blawg, who is now in Time Magazine (like he needs any more press - the man is a one-man PR machine).  Why did I think of George?  Because he wrote a blogpost about Hirevue (one of my clients), who also blog. 

The Time article written by Lisa
.

The story George uses about orchestras, I've actually seen before, in the book, Freakonomics, and both of those authors blog.

Who else does the story mention?  Jobster, of course, who also blog.

Anyone else see a trend here?  Maybe while we're tracking ROI, we ought to be adding media mentions.  Too bad we can't put a value on a Lisa-to-Tiffany-to-Jim-to-George social network.

And the reporter, Lisa Cullen?  In addition to being a staff writer?  She blogs.


Legal Trends In Technology

Dennis Kennedy, blawgger par excellence, has been devoting his time to writing about technology trends for lawyers.

He has a series of posts that covers the use of laptops, RSS feeds, social media, Windows Vista, search engines and a slew of other topics that help lawyers navigate the complex world of torts and servers.

It's also good reason for small businesses in general, including staffing firms.  Dennis is tracking the changes of technology in how they are adopted, which is far more useful than the normal practice of tracking technology based on what it can do. 

If you are a lawyer in St Louis, Dennis is someone you should know - if you are a lawyer elsewhere in the country, you should move to St Louis so that you can bump into Dennis on the street and get his advice.  Or you could just hire him.

Seriously, check out his trends posts.  I'll write more on them at the other recruiting blogs.  As soon as I get more time.


Interview With Trisha Minor Of The Newberry Group

The following is an e-mail interview with a St Louis Recruiter.  Here are your Ten Questions with Trisha Minor of the Newberry Group.   

1.  What is your role at the Newberry Group?  How long have you been there?

I am currently a Sr. CTG Recruiter/Mentor; I have been with the Newberry Group for a little over 6 months – I was previously with PDS Technical Services for over 3 years – I started PDS as a Jr. recruiter and moved into a Sr. It recruiting role…

2.  Every company says they are different in the way they recruit. We can't all be the best, so what makes you unique to the client?  And for this question, you're not allowed to use marketing speak.

Our recruiters get involved in the community.  The Newberry Group encourages us to participate in community functions and get involved in user groups to develop a stronger candidate base.  Probably one of the biggest separating factors between our group and the competition is the true sense of teamwork and commitment we feel to our candidates.  We honestly believe that operating as a team will ultimately result in a win, win, win situation.... A win for the candidate, a win for our team, and a win for The Newberry Group.  In other words, teamwork is our distinguishing factor, and our candidates can sense it, which elevates their commitment to us.

Continue reading "Interview With Trisha Minor Of The Newberry Group" »


Small Business Help From Missouri

I had the pleasure of chatting with some Missouri government employees a couple of weeks ago.  I was looking with envy at the high PageRank of the .gov sites, and thought that since business that comes to Missouri-registered businesses from outside of the state can come from search engines, that it would be in the state's interest to give us all links.

Granted, there are a lot of Missouri businesses, and the logistics are pretty severe, so the idea never really went anywhere, but I did find out about a couple of places that could help, and I also found out about the Missouri Business Portal, which is a new site from the state of Missouri with online resources for small businesses.

You can register your business, gain professional licensing, get access to the state of Missouri Job board, get forms for tax ID numbers, and basically, save yourself the time of going down to an office to get the forms.

Now if there was just a page that explains why my wife and I pay unemployment taxes for our business when we can never claim that unemployment.  What am I going to do - have her lay me off for a couple of weeks around Christmas and sit around for a couple of weeks before she hires me again?


Storkcalling Break

I can't post today, because I'm mapping out the community for my new project - Storkcalling.com.

It's an automated birth announcement service for expectant parents, and I'm using blog marketing to drive online traffic.  The service allows you to record a greeting and broadcast it to fifty names on a contact list of friends and family.  This allows the father and mother to make one call and send out the baby stats without having to stand in the parking lot on the cell phone calling all the relatives.  If you have a nighttime delivery, you can set the broadcast time for the next morning, allowing you to get some sleep while keeping your promise to contact everyone. 

The site is Storkcalling.com - so if you're pregnant or looking for a baby shower gift, this is a great site to start.  The service takes credit cards, is secured by GeoTrust, and I'm in charge of customer service, so you know everything will go smoothly.    The blog is Storkcalling.typepad.com, although when we do the site redesign, everything will be at Storkcalling.com, and it will look a lot better.

Check it out - and if you know someone is expecting...


Enough Dumping On The Job Boards

There's quite the trend of dumping on job boards.  I think it's counterproductive.  A recent post from Recruiters are Dummies (nice title - should make lots of friends) compared job boards to recycling bins.

The more people that post resumes on the site, the more they can 'cost-justify' their pricing. The best analogy I can make is nightclubs that realize in order to get the guys to come and spend some serious cash, you have to give the girls free admission and free drinks (well, maybe until 11pm or so!) Without the women, the guys won't show up. In the same respect, a database of 5 million resumes is quite the attraction to HR and 3rd party recruiters.

Moral of the story:  If you're going to put yourself on a board, at least put your contact info as 'Confidential' - it's a small conciliation, but at least communicates that you're aware of the re-circulatory garbage floating around in your midst.

A couple of things.  First - if you are going to put your name on Monster - don't waste your time putting it in as confidential.  Recruiters move so fast they don't have time to respond to confidential candidates, and half the time, marking as confidential only makes sense if you're smart enough to wipe your resume, too.  Confidential on your title with your name and number in the resume header doesn't speak well to your detailing abilities.

Job boards have their problems - and I wouldn't use them now that I know how not to use them - but twice in my life I've been hired off Monster, so I can't complain.  For hundreds of thousands of people, the same is true.  Putting your name on Monster or Careerbuilder is a great way to get calls, and man of us have been hired through the boards.

Leaving aside the frustration of recruiters who have to work with HR people who refuse to accept job board candidates, the reasons to use a job board can outnumber the reasons to hide your profile in your secret network.

You just have to give up your pride.  Using a job board is either a sign of desperation or ignorance.  Either you don't know any better, or you need a job now and will try anything to get out of your situation.

Recruiters are Dummies had the right analogy.  Going to a job board is like going to a bar when you are tired of being alone.  Yes - we know some people who met their spouse at a bar, but we also know a lot of stories don't end up that way.  We know that church, or volunteering, or using our social networks works better, but it also takes effort, and for many people, the "idea" of having a job is more important than the actual job itself.

But let's not blame the job boards, anymore than we blame the bars.  The problem is self-confidence and education.  The job boards didn't create the problem - the people submitting their resumes did.