Category Archives: age

Social Media, Recruitment, Seriously, it ain’t that new!

I find it interesting, this world we live in.  I’m probably too entrenched in this Social Media, Recruiting space.  I get genuinely surprised when people either a) discover Social Media b) discover how to use it within Recruitment.  When people rock up at these conferences and are all starry eyed and “Wow’ed” at what they are discovering.  I know it is pretty cool stuff, which is why I like to go for these.  I too was once doe eyed listening at the foot of the wisdom tree sucking in as much as I could, and honestly… it changed my Recruiting life.  But that was many years ago now, Social Media was in its infancy, LinkedIn had less than a million people on it, Facebook was barely out of college, Twitter wasn’t thought of yet and only had a couple of thousand users.  I still remember the nerves of hitting “publish” on my first blog post (@AdamAxon I think you’d remember) and expecting the world to somehow stop (it didn’t… I guess you knew that though huh?)

Why is Social media such a surprise for people now? 2 people join Linkedin every second they tell us.  Facebook has almost a billion people on it, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, Tumblr etc etc etc ad infinitum.   It’s mainstream right? Not reserved as the pure domain of computer nerds and people who cannot connect with people in real life (we’re all there still though).  Right?  By hitting “publish” on this post, I’m probably preaching to the converted, but I’m typing it anyways!

The great thing I love about Social Media, is the speed of its evolution.  This speed makes it OK to try things, if it doesn’t work, fine, switch gears, mark down the lesson learned and go on to the next thing.  Failure doesn’t always mean the apocalypse, just ask questions about Google Wave.  The world of Social Media will forgive you and let you move on (and probably forget about your little mistake pretty quickly.. oh look something shiny….. sorry what was I talking about?)

Sometimes I think it’s healthy to sit back and look at the world around you.  Realise that not everyone thinks the same way, (yes, even with all the reciprocal smoke blowing on some of these blog sites) and be prepared to talk people through what you do.  Are you sure you know/understand why you do things? Social Media is still scary for people, especially people in companies, it is a move away from what they have traditionally done, things that have been successful.  Change is tough, change is confronting, and sometimes, it’s not always needed.  People need to understand why they are doing things, what’s in it for them! Not just follow blindly.  You need to have a reason, a business imperative to join in to the conversation.  I really don’t think having 3000 “Likers” or “followers” is a legitimate business goal, there I said it!

Find that reason, find that critical need, and the rest will happen.  It’s our job (us old time players in this space), to educate, challenge and support.  I’m learning not to assume that people know this stuff, which is a challenge for me, even though I’m not a Digital Native myself.  If you or your company are struggling to take the leap, don’t be scared, trust me (OK, I realise that was said by a Recruiter)… the water is fine.  You’ll find and learn by doing! That’s the best bit about Social Media’s evolution, you keep learning and evolving with it.  It’s a great ride, share it with people.


When is THE time? Building your career

I remember growing up wanting to be like my heroes on the sporting field, I wanted to play AFL footy for Carlton, and of course play cricket for Australia, unfortunately I learned quite early I lacked one important ingredient to be successful in these fields.. Talent.

There was always hope though of course growing up, if I could practice that little bit more, do something more like the my heroes did, I’d copy all the techniques in a desperate attempt to glean the gold which will give me that talent… nothing worked..

But there was still hope. Even when I got a little older and things became a little more real for me, people my age were getting drafted into teams, even those great ones, starting to play for these teams. I was really amazed when someone my age got chosen for one of these teams… any moment, they’ll recognise my (well) hidden talent and I’ll be on my way for a great sporting career. It never happened.

Now I find myself in the bizarre situation where people my age are being labelled as too old to play, have started retiring from these competitions,way past their prime from a sporting sense. That’s confronting…. too old? seriously? me? My chances of getting drafted to Carlton or being called up to the Australian Cricket team are officially over. No need to keep the mobile phone fully charged, I’m starting to realise the call just won’t come.

I have finally come to terms with this, however something else hit me (apart from my wife for having such silly thoughts) When is my prime? These guys are apparently past it in their chosen fields, when do you hit your prime in a professional sense? Am I already passed it? If not when will I be there? How will I know it when I am there? or is it something you look back on fondly, saying “I remember when I knew everything”

I heard someone say once I’m tool old to know everything like I did when I was 20.

Is the timing, that in your 20s your learning your craft, in your 30s your really establishing yourself, in your 40s you can start milking it, in you 50s are set, 60s you can retire and play more golf!

From that, by your 40s you should be in your professional prime. In this time of Baby Boomers moving on, and Gen Y’s getting a bigger part of the professional pie, do these numbers hold. Or in reality are they just numbers? Totally irrelevent in real life.

Gee I hope I haven’t passed my prime, I’m still learning so much and having so much fun learning it (and I still have half my house to pay off). However, I’m also at the stage where I am starting to impart my “knowledge” on other people (whether they want it or not) and some grey is coming in, more visible when no product in my hair apparently. I’m still mimicing my heroes, but from my chosen profession now (see my JD (Jason Davis) wannabe hat photo, no I’m not telling you where it is)

I’d love some input from people…

If you are passed your prime, when was it?

If you haven’t hit it yet, when do you think it will be?

If you are in your prime, how do you know?