Article by Wendy McCance
When I first ran across the way someone I was working with got a job, I thought it was just a slick trick used by one person. After a few months, I have seen a trend developing (or maybe people have always done this) to get a job.
As a freelance writer and a social media consultant, I have set up several appointments for people who want to polish up a resume’ or even write their mission statement for the job they have just landed. It makes sense to polish up your writing and step into a new job looking your best. What has shocked me is how many people are hiring me to teach them how to use social media platforms because that is what the bulk of their job entails.
In general, it would be no big deal to teach someone the in’s and out’s of social media. I mean not everyone knows how to use a Twitter account or get their name plastered all over the web if someone was to Google them. What is a little mind-blowing is the people who use my services because they are essentially in need of learning what their job will be each and every day.
I have met with people who are taking over marketing departments, are in charge of PR or some type of similar job where their main focus is to take care of the maintenance of the companies social media platforms. These are people who went into interviews and talked up their skills in using sites they have never touched or have barely managed to navigate around.
How can someone be so slick as to get through an interview and come off as a social media genius when they don’t know how to work with social media at all? I have been seriously floored by these people and their ability to get their foot in the door in a high paying, upper-level job where an entire company depends on the abilities that they don’t have.
There are so many people looking for jobs that actually do have the background in marketing that these companies are searching for. What is it that gives those few people without the background the ability to come off as more in the know than the people who really do know what they are doing?
I found out about this nifty trick when I started receiving calls and emails from people who had just gotten job offers and needed to quickly learn the skills that they would need in their job each day. These people were more than happy to pay $50.00 an hour for me to teach them everything they would need to know. You would be amazed at how much people are willing to shell out for multiple hours of tutoring so that they can get up to speed.
On the upside, I would like to point out that anyone can learn how to navigate through the social media jungle. If you get good at flooding your name on the web, by all means, apply to some of these marketing jobs. They pay a significant wage and might be worth the effort to apply.
As for these companies, it is obvious that they don’t know what to look for in hiring a social media expert. If they had done research, they would have seen some sketchy patterns. I
f a potential candidate doesn’t have their name easily found when Googled, that’s a definite clue that they aren’t savvy in the social media world. Anyone with social media skills will flood their name across the web. It is the easiest and cheapest form of advertisement there is. If you are looking for a job, you will want to be easy to find. If the candidate doesn’t have the basic Facebook account or Twitter account that is actively used, it’s another red flag. Ask the candidate to name some of the most popular social media platforms, and ask them why those platforms are relevant. Each social media site does something a little different. You will want a candidate who can tell you why your company would do well with Twitter but not Instagram (for example).
So what about you? Have you ever gotten a job that you weren’t even slightly qualified for? Did you lose out on a job that went to someone you knew had less of a background than you? What about in the future, will you try to go after a job where you have no experience? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section. Let’s get the conversation going.
To contact Wendy McCance about a writing or social media assignment, interview or speaking engagement, please email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org