The more I use Social Media, the more I find myself to be a conduit of sorts to my network. I'm able to successfully link one connection to another via a virtual rolodex that didn't exist for me years ago. I've only been active on LinkedIn for a few years, and on Facebook and Twitter for just over a year.
I believe in karma, especially in Social Media. The more I help my network, the more my network helps me. I'm creating friendships and connections that make my job easier to do. Plus, there's no comparison to receiving "The Note" in my LinkedIn inbox from a job seeker who is back to work, and thanking me for the social media tips they learned along the way that helped them in their job search.
In addition to my network working through me for career opportunities, they also seek help in other areas. Sometimes they have job postings (seems like more and more of these lately - perhaps a good sign?). And sometimes they are looking to connect for networking purposes.
Back to the career seekers / job posting topic for a second. There's a phenomenon I see in my network which I call the "Titanic Effect." You'll recall the part of Titanic's timeline when the boat was sinking fast and the lifeboats were not all completely full, but they were rowing away from the crowded ocean for fear that the lifeboats would be overtaken and all would be lost. The same thing is occurring with some hiring managers nowadays: they don't want to post a job on monster or even on LinkedIn because they don't want to be overwhelmed with 500+ resumes and inquiries. Even though they know there are a lot of talented people seeking work.
There was a show on TV once about the Titanic and they had a group of grade-schoolers brainstorm ways that more passengers could be saved. They thought of dozens of solutions, the most memorable of which was bringing all the lifeboats together and using fabric and furniture to create a tarp to hold more passengers inside the circle of lifeboats. The kids put their heads together and thought of creative solutions, and so should we.
We all want the economy to improve and some of our lifeboats have space to spare. But if the fear of being capsized is greater than the belief that we can help, we're frozen to do anything (no titanic pun intended).
So I ask you: if you have an open position at your company, do something - reach out through your network with a description of your job. It's like extending a hand to an adjoining lifeboat and opening up a few seats as a result. I'm not saying to post it on Monster or advertise it on your nightly news. But if we all did a little something today, and then tomorrow, and then the next day, we'd start building more positive momentum. And that positive karma would create more positive karma, and would come back to us. It could be in the form of more business for our company. It could be in more leads from our network. It could be in stronger relationships with our clients and customers. But in order for anything to occur, the process needs to start somewhere.
Sometimes karma stalls out like a ball in motion that loses momentum. Push it forward a bit or even down a hill and you've got some serious speed. Don't expect it to come back to you. It will -- eventually though. Because that is the power of social media karma.
My goal is to help one person in my network before the end of the night. I challenge you to do the same. See you on linkedin, facebook, or twitter. And share your own challenges here.