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January 2008
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March 2008

Four Truths About Hiring Social Media Types

Over at SocialMediaHeadhunter, my new recruiting site for hiring social media types, I write about four truths I've picked up if you're looking to hire someone who knows Facebook, Twitter, Bebu, Sphere, etc.

My favorite Truth is #2, and I imagine it will warm the heart of Michael Kelemen, who probably will be the only one to get the joke. It's full of truthiness.

Truth #2:  Most Social Media Types Are Communists

Okay, communists isn't the right term (although it's eye-catching), but if you're looking for someone with social media experience to help you make money, make sure you ask the social media candidate what experience they have in making money with social media.  They may or may not have dollar figures, but if they have never thought about using social media as a tool to make money, they're probably not a good fit.

This isn't to say that there's anything wrong with using social media for fun or to build  up your brand.  It's great for consultants and small businesses who want to improve their online profile. Corporations usually want more, and vague goals like "communicating with your customers" are usually a sign that the candidate is an excellent social networker, but maybe not someone you want running your department. 

You're paying for results.  The right candidate will be able to tell you how to achieve results with social media.

If you're looking for someone to do your Social Media Recruiting, ask the recruiter who knows social media (that's me.)

A Chance To Buy

This site is called  It's focus is the overall employment and staffing marketplace in St Louis.  What's been interesting is the number of people over the last three years that call this the StlRecruitER blog.  Time and again, people verbally called it stlrecruiter, and then I found out that people were linking stlrecruitER, so I did the obvious.  I went out and bought the domain name.

So now I own and StlRecruiter, and recruiter forwards to recruiting.

I'm going to continue using this blog to help headhunters, staffing firms, and corporations learn how to use social media to hire, but StlRecruiter should be used by someone actively recruiting in St Louis.  If you're interested in purchasing the domain name, or in purchasing it and learning how to make money with it, contact me at

This offer is only open to active recruiters, staffing firms, and company careers sites.  I don't want to sell the site to someone who will put up ads on it or make it a job board.

Beware The Boss Button

If you read ESPN, or any other number of sites, there's often "button" on the screen that you can press to take you to an innocuous spread sheet, or some other kind of random screen that won't show you fawning over the prospective Rams draft picks (or worse, if you're on CNNSI).

I was at today, and saw a Boss Button from CareerBuilder.  It was an advertisement, but I'm always curious, so I clicked it.

OMG.  If you're playing the video, it doesn't stop the video.  It Instead overlays this onto your screen.

Continue reading "Beware The Boss Button" »

Crossbows and Mustaches: Episode 1

Half of what I currently do is focused on marketing, separate from recruiting.  So this post is about a new video series that's being launched at MySpace TV.  It's called Crossbows and Mustaches, and it's a parody of crime dramas. The content has language and adult situations, so it's not safe for the corporate workplace, but it's funnier than anything Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan ever did.

How's that for a recommendation?  The video is below the fold.

Continue reading "Crossbows and Mustaches: Episode 1" »

Hanging Out At The Social Media Club St Louis

The Social Media Club is meeting here at Kaldi's in Kirkwood.  So far we've covered Utterz, Jot, Seismic (sp), Twitter, and of course the different blogs. Below is a list of the people who were there.

Jim Durbin: (me)
Franki Durbin:  Life In A Venti Cup
Tanner Hobin: TannerHobin
Andrew Nagy:
Kurt Greenbaum -
Kristen Munson -
Justin Schmidt -
Lisa Young -
Melody Cissell -
Todd Jordan -
Reem Abeidoh -
Don Krutewicz - donkrutewicz
Angeline Soon -
Ryan Suther
Howard McAuliffe-

Also check out the new site, MidwestBlogs.

Hiring Through The Cell Phone: AJb4U2 :0 lol

Two years ago, a few (possibly apocryphal) stories were running about recruiters hiring candidates through the use of text messages.  One story came from Steven Rothberg, who talked about using text messaging to improve your college recruiting.

Well, it's anecdotal, but I just heard about a person getting a multi-million dollar job offer through a text message.  And they don't work for Google.

Enter Rachel Bilson, one of the stars of the O.C., who is re-emerging in the new film, JumperReports from SMS Text News are saying she was hired through a text message.  The report is originally from the TImes of India, and it says:

She says, “I was at my cousin’s wedding in Tennessee and I got a text message. I guess it’s the new way to cast someone in a movie — the director just text messages you. It’s not bad, I wouldn’t mind if it happened more often. Doug sent me a text message and asked me what I was doing. I went, ‘Literally, right now?

I’m at my cousin’s wedding.’ And he messaged, ‘Well, what are you doing this autumn? Are you gonna come be in my movie?’ I was like, ‘I’m going to have to talk to some people about that. Hopefully it will work out.’ And it did.”

Now that Hollywood is on the bandwagon, can corporate HR be far behind? Put away those stuff envelopes with your formal letters. If you can't say you hired in 160 characters or less, you're not going to get the top talent.

Thank You For Attending The HCI Webinar

If you have any further questions or want to contact me, please leave a comment below or send me an e-mail at  Feel free to connect to me on LinkedIn.

And if you want to see the video I was talking about (the candidate left alone), head on over to Flektor.

Thanks for listening. I have another webinar coming in March with Shally Steckerl and Margaret Graziano on Future Trends In Recruiting. Hope to see you there!

The Numbers Still Matter (Just Make Sure It's The Right Numbers)

I'm a big fan of social media.  When pitching a program to a client, I discuss the benefits of blogging, but focus in on the money you can make blogging in excess of what you're currently making. In my view, if you're not hiring more people or making more placements with your blog, then you have no business spending working hours on your blog.

Of course, this is also true for meetings, paperwork, hour and a half long interviews with bad candidates, RFP's, reading ESPN at work, checking your e-mail, and talking about quality initiatives with your boss.  The truth is that if you're not making money, most of what you do is a waste anyway.

So when I'm training, and someone asks me how long they should spend blogging a week - I tell them 3-5 hours.  That's a big chunk of time, and the only people it makes sense for are those who already tightly manage their time.  One of the first lessons I had in recruiting was the idea that planning was the most important consideration in my success. I had to plan my day, and then execute it.  I had to know how many phone calls, interviews, submittals, sendouts, meetings and starts I needed to make quota.  And over time, I saw that when you didn't hit your numbers, you didn't make your placements.

Continue reading "The Numbers Still Matter (Just Make Sure It's The Right Numbers)" »

Screening Your Staffing Agencies

Hiring a staffing agency is easy.  Simply let the market know you have open positions, and account managers from staffing firms will call you to tell you they can fill you jobs with the best people.

Like most corporate decisions, the time-crunched decision maker is forced to rely on salespeople to decide who is the best fit for the company.  That process isn't going to change, but one that might is the questions that staffing firms are asked before they are given open positions.

Rob Neelbauer of Job Matchbox writes on the subject of questioning your staffing firm before giving them open reqs, and as a former recruiter and current hiring manager/owner, he has a unique perspective.

For example, in my recent interviews of recruiters I spoke with recruiters who represented that they knew all about different things in the tech world.  So I asked them questions that were telling.  I asked them if they used Facebook.  If they said no then I asked them if they knew what Web 2.0.  You would not believe what kinds of answers I got back.  My personal favorite has been the recruiter that doesn’t use Facebook but knows how to recruit Facebook developers.  The bottom line here if you don’t ask then you will not receive.

Now to be fair, salespeople don't have to be on Facebook to recruit Facebook developers.  They have recruiters to do that, and the ability to code Facebook Apps can be found by recruiters with no knowledge of the site.  It is possible, but is it likely?  Robert as a business owner has to make a decision whether to use a recruiter. His cost is his time.  Should he give his time away to a salesperson who doesn't even have  a passing acquaintance with the industry Robert works in?

A good recruiter can find anyone, and I don't buy into the idea that you have to know how to code Java to be a good Java recruiter.  But you do have to know something about software development to be able to screen people effectively.  So Robert passed on those recruiters.

The real question is what is the best method for screening recruiters?  What are the criteria for establishing a good relationship with a firm.  My hunch is that our "hunches" about what makes a good recruiter are dead wrong.  I wonder if anyone has done benchmarking on the actual effectiveness of staffing firms.  What make a strong recruiting fit?

Update:  Rob has further thoughts on Q&A for your Staffing firm.