Saturday, April 16, 2005

Break-Room Leads and Social Networks

Anyone who has job-hunted in the recent past knows the value of inside information. Job leads are more likely to be found in the break rooms of hiring companies than on nation-wide job-boards.

When A asks B about her weekend and B tells A she's hurting for a business analyst so bad she didn't remember having a weekend. Turns out that HR has a ninety day lead time to fill the position by when her project would be in the red. Week and weekend would coalesce into one - the quasi-static state of joblessness. B is probably not social networked. If A is and he spreads the word around , he'll be doing two people a favor and earning some good karma along the way.

In his essay on social networks , Rob Peterson says

"I believe that Social Software is a vector a return to an old culture.When I say old culture, I mean the culture that fits the essential nature of humans and that fits nature itself. I imagine a return to the custom of being personally authentic, to a definition of work that serves the needs of our community, and to a society where our institutions serve to enhance all life.I see signs that that we are going home. See if you can see what I can see."

While I was all about tapping the hidden job market when I started out social networking, the personal element about the interactions made the experience unique. In the end it was not about a new gig, but the pleasure of making the acquaintances sometimes friendship along the way. I see what Peterson sees.

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