All Articles Tagged "social network"
As trendy as “networking” has become, social networks, party flyers, and random strangers have led us to believe that it is interchangeable with socializing and outright solicitation. While socializing is a major part of networking, it is not the end-all-be-all. In fact, this belief is why many find their attempts at “networking” to be unsuccessful.
Noun. The exchange of information or services among individuals, groups, or institutions; specifically: the cultivation of productive relationships for employment or business. (Merriam-Webster)
The main word in this definition is exchange. In an exchange, both parties give something to receive something, or in other words, the relationship is mutually beneficial. This refutes the belief that soliciting others for services or entry into a particular industry or field, without offering them anything in return qualifies as networking.
Rather than sending someone in your desired field an unsolicited tweet saying “Call me. (555)555-5555. I would like for you to help me get a job in XYZ.” You should try, “Hello, I’m Sue. I do XYZ well, and would appreciate the opportunity to help your company improve in such and such area.” This approach is more likely to begin a rapport; it starts with you offering a service rather than asking for a handout. No one likes to feel used.
It is important to acknowledge the other party’s career goals as well, and how you can help them reach these goals more efficiently. Bringing something to the party is just as important as the venue. When attempting to network, it is important to remember that there is a time and place for everything. Despite what the flyers for the “After-Work Social” may say, sometimes people do not want to talk business after several half-priced margaritas. And honestly, just because it’s a business mixer does not mean everyone has business. This is not to say that every beneficial business relationship stems from a formal setting, but do not be fooled by the boatload of “networking events” that are held every day just to get you and your money in the door. Research the person holding the networking event. Have they had other successful networking events? What does their network look like? Do they have a good reputation?
These are all important questions to ask, and while networking events are helpful, you can build genuine relationships with people by attending places and events that you are actually interested in. If you are a writer, you are bound to meet other writers at writing workshops, book signings, magazine events, and the like. Genuine relationships that begin from common interests have proven to be more productive than contrived ones.
During and after college, I found myself constantly working for free. Although I didn’t really do anything worthy of adding to my resume in many of these positions, one of the greatest benefits of this work was meeting and building relationships with people — and companies — in the field. These people had a front row seat to my work ethic, attitude, and personality, so when I began my job hunt, I was lucky enough to have industry insiders sending me openings, writing reference letters, and supporting me throughout the process.
Ironically, the person who was the most helpful in my job search was an executive assistant whom I didn’t directly work with, but always talked to in passing and occasionally in department gatherings.
After my internship ended, we kept in touch via email, and when positions matching my interest came up, she was sure to contact me. She even went as far as editing my resume, and personally submitting it to the hiring manager. As grateful as I was for her help, I never expected it. I simply thought she was a nice person and enjoyed talking to her. This experience reminded me how important it is to respect and be polite to everyone from the doorman to CEO, because you never know who can or will help you on your journey to your best self.
My hope is the next time you hear “networking,” you don’t automatically think about successful people and what they can do for you, but instead you think of building genuine, mutually beneficial relationships. By exposing yourself to different events and happenings in your field, being polite, and having an attitude of service, you are destined to meet some really cool people, learn a few new things, and strengthen your network.
There’s no doubt that corporations are flocking to social media to target their niche audiences. But recruiters are seeking out people with some sort of social media specialty. While the position of a social media manager solely rests on the employee’s ability to strengthen the company’s marketability on different online networks, employers would rather hire workers who are efficient in their own field but are social media-savvy as well. According to Quartz, recruiters are posting fewer positions for “social media managers,” with listings for those positions falling by half from August 2012 to August 2013. However, the number of jobs with the words “social media” in the description doubled during that yearlong span.
Job postings that prefer the candidate to have social media knowledge have risen 89 percent, according to data from Indeed. The appearance of keywords such as “Vine,” an app allows users to upload short videos, and “Instagram”, a photosharing site, have grown on job descriptions 154 percent and 644 percent, respectively.
“We are seeing an increased demand for social savvy candidates across the business – from human resources to product to customer service,” said Amy Crow, Indeed’s communications director. “In addition, we’re seeing this demand span many levels, from executive assistants to senior vice presidents.”
“[Rest in peace], social media managers,” Quartz said, “tweeting is everyone’s job now.”
Social capital is one’s ability to use their social relationships for productive benefits in their lives, as defined by Social Capital Research. A recent study published in Future Internet discovers how African-Americans use social networks to promote their own social capital and economic mobility.
If you can effectively use your friendships and acquaintances to enhance your career and livelihood, you have powerful social capital. Unfortunately, blacks are disadvantaged in the social capital aspect; their networking with potential employers falls short compared to whites. This is a topic we touched on earlier this month, with our writer saying:
As Ditomaso points out in the piece when you are poor and black, you tend to only network with other poor and black folks, which means that the odds that your network would be able to connect you to the right opportunities, particularly ones that will enable you not to be poor anymore, are relatively slim. To Ditomaso’s point, connections are how most folks nowadays get jobs. That’s because the vast majority of job openings are not advertised – or at least not the good ones. And the only way to tap into the underground job market is if you, for the lack of a better term, have a hook-up.
Researchers delved into two reasons why African Americans have less productive professional relationships than whites. The first reason is fear that the job referral may disappoint the boss; one’s reputation is at stake. Secondly, studies have shown that black managers at Fortune 500 companies simply possess less clout than white managers.
The study indicates that African Americans can use social networks like Facebook and Twitter to promote their name and increase the likelihood of socio-economic mobility. In interviewing about 2,250 African Americans, the researchers concluded that the use of social networking can make up for the lack of social capital accrued by Blacks. African Americans are 44 percent more likely than whites to have more than one profile, which can increase one’s potential of meeting beneficial business contacts and promoting one’s brand.
Ultimately, the study focuses on how blacks can use an online platform to mitigate offline inequality. To increase your personal brand using social networks, check out our useful tips on enhancing your online profile.
Are you using Facebook and Twitter to bolster your career?
We’ve brought you this second installment of today’s Tech Talk but this is just too good.
Randi Zuckerberg, sister to Mark and former head of marketing at the family’s social network, Facebook (she’s now an executive producer of the Bravo show Silicon Valley), posted a picture on her Facebook page (available here), showing the reactions of friends and family to the network’s new “poke” function. Callie Schweitzer, director of marketing and projects at VoxMedia, friend of the family, and a prolific tweeter, posted the photo on Twitter.
Turns out, Zuckerberg had only intended for her FB friends to see the photo. When it popped up online, she tweeted at Schweitzer, expressing her… displeasure.
“I posted it only to friends on FB. You reposting it on Twitter is way uncool,” she wrote, according to Mashable. (They have a list of the tweets that were exchanged.) Despite an apology and explanation (Schweitzer said it appeared on her feed so she assumed it was public), Zuckerberg used the incident to try and teach everyone a lesson in the dos and don’ts of social media sharing, saying it’s “not about privacy settings.” Now, not only has the photo gone viral, but Zuckerberg’s rant is getting lots of sarcastic responses from the online world.
“Yes, Randi Zuckerberg, Please Lecture Us About ‘Human Decency,’” is the headline on Dan Lyons’ article on ReadWriteWeb. Facebook has a long list of complaints in its inbox, some legal, many related to its privacy policies, which are circuitous and, to many, overly invasive.
Zuckerberg has lightened up a little in the past couple of hours, but it’s one more argument against Facebook and its handling of privacy issues. In many ways, the company has turned a deaf ear to the privacy concerns of users. When it’s in the family, the company might hear those complaints a little more clearly. And to be sure, if something actually changed for the better as a result of the incident, it would be a great moment for the company.
Instagram revealed updates to its terms of service today, alerting users that they will be sharing data collected through the app with Facebook, the company that purchased it for a $1 billion earlier this year.
More shocking to many is language that suggests Instagram will sell user photos to third parties without pay for the person who snapped the picture.
The line that has got everyone frothing at the mouth is this:
You agree that a business may pay Instagram to display your photos in connection with paid or sponsored content or promotions without any compensation to you.
According to The Verge, this and other language in the terms of service are very similar to those in place for other online services. Moreover, the new terms actually make things clearer and “more limited.”
“Instagram can’t sell your photos to anyone, for example. It simply doesn’t have permission,” the article says. But “an advertiser can pay Instagram to display your photos in a way that doesn’t create anything new — so Budweiser can put up a box in the timeline that says ‘our favorite Instagram photos of this bar!’ and put user photos in there, but it can’t take those photos and modify them, or combine them with other content to create a new thing.”
In other words, you can appear in an ad without first being asked for permission, though your photo can’t be altered with a logo or anything else. The New York Times has a few other details, including the fact that there’s no way to opt out short of deleting your account.
Instagram has heard the shrieks of anger and, reports CNN, has tweeted a promise to provide more information soon.
The new terms go into effect on January 16 and apply to about 100 million users. We’ve written just this week about the concerns over privacy and control of personal data. Do these new terms of service concern you?
African Americans love Twitter. In fact, according to studies, blacks are more likely than whites to join Twitter. So it’s no wonder blacks are driving national Twitter slang.
A recent study by computer scientist Jacob Eisenstein of the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta and his colleagues found that much of the shorthand used on the social networking site evolves in cities with large African American populations before spreading out more widely, reports The Root.
And according to BBC News, “Spelling bro, slang for brother (male friend or peer) as bruh began in the southeastern U.S. (where it reflects the local pronunciation) before finally jumping to southern California. The emoticon ‘-__-’ (denoting mild annoyance) began in New York and Florida before colonizing both coasts and gradually reaching Arizona and Texas.”
Why does this happen? One possibility, notes The Root, is that innovations spread by simple diffusion from person to person. Another suggestion is that bigger population areas “exert a stronger attraction on neologisms, so that they go first to large cities by a kind of gravitational pull.” Still, others think words might spread initially within some minority groups but remain invisible to the majority.
As it has been widely reported, African Americans are early adopters of new technology. And, as we recently noted, blacks are also over-indexing on sites like Tumblr.
Facebook is testing a new version of users’ Timelines, less than a year after the social network went through a major re-design. Rather than the two-column layout, Facebook will move all the posts into one column on the left, with sections such as “Recent Activity” and “Friends” on the right, according to Inside Facebook.
Many users originally complained when Facebook introduced Timeline, saying it was confusing to have to jump from one side of the page to the other to read posts in order. With this re-design, however, the line down the middle of the page is removed, ironically making the page look less like a Timeline. The dates on the right side of the page, allowing users to jump to a particular time, are still in tact.
On the revenue side, The Daily reports that Facebook has fast-tracked a plan to introduce classified ads, including apartment rentals and job listings, into users’ newsfeeds. While similar to the promoted posts for users, which allow average Facebook users to promote a post so it appears in more friends’ newsfeeds, posts for individual housing, for example, would not be paid. Additionally, users could tag relevant Facebook friends in the posts, share posts with others, or link to outside sites.
The Daily said, “The projects section is maybe the most interesting. Similar to Craigslist’s Gigs section, it would let users post tips and information about a variety of topics from clearing brush to installing WordPress.”
This is a major opportunity for Facebook, as companies are already using the site to reach out to potential employees. And with the targeting abilities, these classified ads could find more relevant readers than a site like Craigslist, which seems to be Facebook’s target in this upgrade.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday, many current and former Facebook employees were finally able to sell their stock after the lockup period ended and the stock exchanges re-opened after Hurricane Sandy. Facebook’s stock price dropped slightly, but due to solid earnings results last week and the announcement of this new classified revenue stream, the price hasn’t fallen below $20.
Did you like the original Timeline or are you excited for this change? Would you use Facebook to post classified ads?
I started using Twitter more frequently for two reasons. First, to connect with and pick the brains of fellow upwardly-mobile twenty-somethings. Secondly, to route, re-route and seamlessly gather passengers onto my reckless, colliding and self-proclaimed philosophical trains of thought. I naively assumed that these were top reasons for most Tweeters/Facebookers, thus following and friending an array of seemingly interesting people. Some were old classmates. Others were folks who tweeted the most profound and poetic one-liners. Still, others were down-to-earth celebs with cool Instagram pics and an appealing perspective on a crapload of topics. I was diggin’ it the most, striking up conversation, getting my social networking on.
It never dawned on me that some (and sometimes MOST) of these people would end up Dougie-ing on my LAST FREAKIN’ NERVE. Had that thought occurred, I might have hit “Unfollow” as quickly as my happy behind followed some of these clowns. Or maybe I wouldn’t have, being that I was the type to obsess over “unfollowing”/”unfriending,” wondering if the person in danger of my withdrawal from their online life would get upset and retaliate in a way that would leave me looking like the bad gal. But one day it hit me. I looked up from a headache-provoking FIVE MINUTES between Twitter and Facebook with a serious WTF! face. I was hemmed up in a 6 by 8 foot cell made of overly-personal status updates, senseless Blonde moments, excess party promoter flyers, hypersexual tweets, borderline rage-a-holic Twitter rants and perpetual hide-her-shoelaces-depressing poetry.
No one made me link up with these people. So, who put this virtual gun to my head to KEEP me a follower of their bullcrap? *hangs head and slowly raises hand* Me. Dumba** me. And to this moment I still don’t know what exactly made me remain friends/Twitter pals with some of these people for as long as I did, besides my need to be pleasing to everyone. These sites used to be fun/interesting/uplifting/thought-provoking/informative to visit. They weren’t anymore. What did I need to do to fix that? Because there was no way I was completely giving up social networking. Tried that. Failed miserably.
I went on an unfollowing/unfriending spree that would make the cast of Mean Girls sit it down and shut it up. Was I trying to be mean? No. I was looking for CLARITY amongst the garbage I had allowed into my online life. Party promoters? Gone. Would you throw a bunch of flyers in my face if we met up on the street? No. So stop it online. Stuck-up girls? GONE. One more status update and Instagram photo about your Jimmy Choos and there’s no way a court of law could hold me responsible for my actions. Downright gutter dudes? Yes, gone. If every other tweet/status update is about your man parts or her “fat p***y” (direct quote), you need therapy and I’m not certified. Be gone.
Please don’t misunderstand – I think social networking is one of the greatest developments in communication since advertising. It provides a central place to rally behind causes that matter, catch up on the haps with old friends, bandy ideas back and forth, interact with role models in whatever field of study/work… all from whichever electronic device you fancy most. Cool.
But what people have lost sight of (including myself there for a minute) is that REAL LIFE is what counts the most! Social networking is supplementary to living a full life. It should not be a source of needless stress. Some of us worry more about Facebook likes and Twitter follows more than we allow ourselves to sit down and actually experience real life in real time with REAL people.
I long for the day when, “Oh, so this b***h unfollowed me? Bet!” is a thing of the past. The day when Twitter will JUST be Twitter and an unfollow won’t hurt feelings. The day when we collectively G-check ourselves out of our cowardly hostage-to-social-networks situation. It’s more than okay to press “OK” when asked “Are you sure you want to unfriend this person?”
I can adore you in real life and loathe the breath you breathe online. That’s cool. I can love your persona online and think your company in person is more painful than an anesthesia-less hysterectomy. That’s cool too. Preference is preference. Everybody won’t be everybody else’s cup of tea. Let’s woman/man up and accept that. We’ve made social networking harder than it has to be and less enjoyable than it was meant to be.
Just know this: If I get on your last severely-frayed nerve ending, feel FREE to unfollow me. Don’t worry. I’ll get the hint.
La Truly is a late-blooming Natural-haired Aries. Her writing is powered by a lifetime of anecdotal proof that awkward can transform to awesome and fear can cast its crown before courage. Armed with the ability to purposefully poke fun at herself and a passion for young women’s empowerment, La seeks to encourage thought, discussion and change. Check out her blog: www.hersoulinc.com and her thoughts/jokes/rants on Twitter: @AshleyLaTruly.
Whether you know it or not, there is still a recession going on. This means that there are plenty of people in line for employment and would love to have a job just like yours. There are seven things you can stop doing at work to avoid being in the opposite position.
Check the list…
Consistent Absent/Lateness Excuses
First you don’t feel well. Then you missed the bus. Now there’s no hot water in your building. Every week, it’s the same thing in a different order. In the beginning, there was sympathy and understanding, now the job just needs to get done. The remedy for all three of those situations is easy: get your act together. One, don’t make calling in sick a habit. Two, get up earlier so that you’re not missing the bus. Three, boil some water and hit the hot spots with a ho* bath. People with 101 excuses about why they can’t show up to do what they get paid for are some of the first individuals employers look to get rid of when layoffs need to take place.
Used correctly, Linkedin can serve as the catalyst that initiates the transition to the next phase of your career. The free members-only service (there is a premium version too) can eliminate the barriers that stand between you, prospective employers, colleagues, clients and mentors. But a good Linkedin connection begins with the invitation.
After you’ve identified someone that you’d like to connect with, avoid the impulse to use the default invitation language and tailor your note to the type of connection that you seek.
On the next few pages, you will find customized examples of Linkedin invites for six different scenarios. Feel free to add additional suggestions or best practices in the comment section.
What to write when…
…you want to connect with a former boss or colleague
We worked together at [COMPANY NAME] in [DATE/YEAR] and I would like to reconnect with you. I currently work at [COMPANY NAME] and think there may be an opportunity to collaborate at some point in the future. I’d love to catch up with you sometime. Please let me know when your schedule permits.