Blogging and Careers

Some folks are talking about the Boston Globe article on blogging being essential to a good career.

Between Tim Bray and Jeremiah Owyang I think the list is expanded pretty darn well and the "challenges" of blogging are also touched on.  I'd add that another downside is information leakage.  Sometimes, personal info you don't intend to share gets inferred, shared, or found and known to others in awkward manners.  Not a huge deal given how much better that aspect is understood by folks now a days, but I remember how my friend posted pictures a long time ago that came back to haunt someone else in a job search. 

I wonder what Mark Jen thinks of this discussion?  He's been on both sides of the fence.  He works down the street from me now, and we get together from time to time.  I really like him, his peers and the space his company is working on!

FWIW, personally blogging did help me get a job.  It also helped get me my master's degree. 

Comments

  1. I can tell you from personal experiance I started a blog that not a lot of people agreed with. I had my name on the contact information and I was found in the white pages, and my personal information was flooded in all my comments.

    This is why like Scoble I know moderate comments and I removed that little bit of information just as a safety net. It stinks tho because I don’t want to be known by an alias, I would love my name on there.

  2. I can tell you from personal experiance I started a blog that not a lot of people agreed with. I had my name on the contact information and I was found in the white pages, and my personal information was flooded in all my comments.

    This is why like Scoble I know moderate comments and I removed that little bit of information just as a safety net. It stinks tho because I don’t want to be known by an alias, I would love my name on there.

  3. I’m a big believer in personal blogging too, and at some level, its actually helped me expand my network even more so than going to graduate school at MIT.

    One thing that would be nice (but will likely never happen) is the ability to control/update one’s content without the tyranny of the Google cache. If people could update their blog or website like they update their resume (deleting stuff that is no longer appropriate or relevant), that would be great.

    Fear of the permanence of Internet content keeps many people off of the web.

  4. I’m a big believer in personal blogging too, and at some level, its actually helped me expand my network even more so than going to graduate school at MIT.

    One thing that would be nice (but will likely never happen) is the ability to control/update one’s content without the tyranny of the Google cache. If people could update their blog or website like they update their resume (deleting stuff that is no longer appropriate or relevant), that would be great.

    Fear of the permanence of Internet content keeps many people off of the web.

  5. Blogging as the new resume padding.

    The Boston Globe article seems to say that instead of working at something to become an expert, just blog as if you are and you may get hired as an expert. Technically, I think it’s legal, too. You’re not really fibbing on your resume or application. It’s not your fault if somebody Googles your expert blog and assumes you’re really an expert at what you’ve posted.

    Good stuff.

  6. Blogging as the new resume padding.

    The Boston Globe article seems to say that instead of working at something to become an expert, just blog as if you are and you may get hired as an expert. Technically, I think it’s legal, too. You’re not really fibbing on your resume or application. It’s not your fault if somebody Googles your expert blog and assumes you’re really an expert at what you’ve posted.

    Good stuff.

  7. Blogging Essential for your Career

    “Blogging is good for your career. A well-executed blog sets you apart as an expert in your field.” – says the Boston Globe (via BL Ochman).   I’ve been saying for a while that “Now It’s Easier than Ever to Build the “Brand Called Y…

  8. Well, not everyone can blog about what they work on. Some of us work on stuff we’re not supposed to talk about. For security reasons, or because we are working on proprietary techniques used for competitive gain. I mean, I might work for the NSA and be working high speed network surveillance – or something like that. If I blog about work, I could end up fired at least, possibly in jail.

    So not everbody can blog about work. I blog about everything else instead – but I don’t guess that is going to get me a job or anything.

  9. Well, not everyone can blog about what they work on. Some of us work on stuff we’re not supposed to talk about. For security reasons, or because we are working on proprietary techniques used for competitive gain. I mean, I might work for the NSA and be working high speed network surveillance – or something like that. If I blog about work, I could end up fired at least, possibly in jail.

    So not everbody can blog about work. I blog about everything else instead – but I don’t guess that is going to get me a job or anything.

  10. @3. Good point. Not sure I’d be comfortable giving someone a high level job based on how they represented themselves as an “expert” on their blog. The echo chamber of networked blogging has the risk of people believing their own and their networked peers “press”. Granted I can pad my resume just as easily, but that can bite me in the ass much easier than what I put on a blog I may have. (See: Notre Dame Football coach, and FEMA director last year during Katrina).

    I can be anyone I want to be on the internet. Not sure how the networked blogsphere polices their own. Particularly if they rely on each other to maintain their standing in the blogosphere.

    Moreover, there are a number of bloggers I would never hire, despite how knowledgable and well connected they may be in their purported field of expertise, based mainly on how they handle themselves on their blog, how they appear to manager, or rather mismangage their time and priorities and how they handle tough questions and challenges to their positions in their comments. Add to that, I have no way of validating if the information they are sharing is really theirs or coming from somewhere else. (Jason Blair, anyone?)

    For example, while Mini-Microsoft appears passionate about turning around the MS ship, I’m not sure that’s someone I want working in my company. What will he do if he suddenly becomes dissallusioned with the job and responsibilities I gave him? Do I want to deal with that headache?

  11. @3. Good point. Not sure I’d be comfortable giving someone a high level job based on how they represented themselves as an “expert” on their blog. The echo chamber of networked blogging has the risk of people believing their own and their networked peers “press”. Granted I can pad my resume just as easily, but that can bite me in the ass much easier than what I put on a blog I may have. (See: Notre Dame Football coach, and FEMA director last year during Katrina).

    I can be anyone I want to be on the internet. Not sure how the networked blogsphere polices their own. Particularly if they rely on each other to maintain their standing in the blogosphere.

    Moreover, there are a number of bloggers I would never hire, despite how knowledgable and well connected they may be in their purported field of expertise, based mainly on how they handle themselves on their blog, how they appear to manager, or rather mismangage their time and priorities and how they handle tough questions and challenges to their positions in their comments. Add to that, I have no way of validating if the information they are sharing is really theirs or coming from somewhere else. (Jason Blair, anyone?)

    For example, while Mini-Microsoft appears passionate about turning around the MS ship, I’m not sure that’s someone I want working in my company. What will he do if he suddenly becomes dissallusioned with the job and responsibilities I gave him? Do I want to deal with that headache?

  12. There are many different ways to look at the issue of personal information being exposed through blogging, or through anything else. That’s not a negative for everyone. I’ve always been extremely open, and most of my friends are the same way. For example …

    I have a good friend who owns a PR firm. He was staying at an expensive hotel in Manhattan years ago, and the cleaning lady stole some marijuana from his room while he was out. He made a big scene at the front desk, standing there in an expensive suit and loudly explaining “my marijuana is missing, and I expect you to replace it or call the police!” They were so flustered by his openness (and, presumably, what this conversation might do to their reputation) that the manager quickly gave him his room for free.

    I guess my point is, being open about things doesn’t always have the negative consequences some might think. Scoble’s cell-phone number to the right is another great example.

    By the way, my ATM card’s PIN is 8739. :-)

  13. There are many different ways to look at the issue of personal information being exposed through blogging, or through anything else. That’s not a negative for everyone. I’ve always been extremely open, and most of my friends are the same way. For example …

    I have a good friend who owns a PR firm. He was staying at an expensive hotel in Manhattan years ago, and the cleaning lady stole some marijuana from his room while he was out. He made a big scene at the front desk, standing there in an expensive suit and loudly explaining “my marijuana is missing, and I expect you to replace it or call the police!” They were so flustered by his openness (and, presumably, what this conversation might do to their reputation) that the manager quickly gave him his room for free.

    I guess my point is, being open about things doesn’t always have the negative consequences some might think. Scoble’s cell-phone number to the right is another great example.

    By the way, my ATM card’s PIN is 8739. :-)

  14. Hmm, interesting read. It presented some things in a way I had not thought about before. I started blogging because it was interesting, for the last few months though I’ve been wondering what direction to take next. This article may not have given me a direction, but its making me think. I like that.

  15. Hmm, interesting read. It presented some things in a way I had not thought about before. I started blogging because it was interesting, for the last few months though I’ve been wondering what direction to take next. This article may not have given me a direction, but its making me think. I like that.

  16. [...] I suspect that the blogs more effective in recruiting aren’t recruiting blogs, but blogs that give a human perspective on the organization. I am thinking of Scoble’s blog, and I really was doing so before I realized that Scoble has commented on Shel’s post, and posted himself about blogging and careers. [...]

  17. [...] Bubba M, who’s guest-blogging for Robert Scoble this week, adds the reminder that blogging can also lead to “information leakage,” as when a friend “…posted pictures a long time ago that came back to haunt someone else in a job search. ” He also mentions Mark Jen, who has bounced back nicely after being fired from Google for blogging too much information about the company. [...]

  18. There are also many people who do their jobs well, but who don’t write particularly well. Blogging’s not the very best way for them to communicate. And I shudder to think what would happen if every businessperson were a blogger: the sheer amount of hot air is almost unimaginable!

    If you have something to say and the ability to say it well, you’re going to be a good blogger. If either of those things aren’t there, you’re not. And it’s okay.

  19. There are also many people who do their jobs well, but who don’t write particularly well. Blogging’s not the very best way for them to communicate. And I shudder to think what would happen if every businessperson were a blogger: the sheer amount of hot air is almost unimaginable!

    If you have something to say and the ability to say it well, you’re going to be a good blogger. If either of those things aren’t there, you’re not. And it’s okay.

  20. [...] There are so many issues on the table here I am not going to try and address all of them! The Marketing Headhunter answers some of these by saying your blog is NOT your resume! Which is true but it is part of you and a part that hiring managers need to be aware of, even if the results are not so good for you. 2 months ago Robert provided us his thoughts on if blogging was good for his career. But just because it is good for him does not mean it will be good for you. My take. [...]

  21. Using a blog to share careers information for prospective employers(or even to show off!) is here to stay, as to whether it is effective with the gazillions of slogs on the web now – who knows? But at the end of the day its just another way to get yourself noticed by the right person – is it neccessary to have a blog to enhance your career prospects? No, its not for everyone, but it sure can help:-)

  22. Using a blog to share careers information for prospective employers(or even to show off!) is here to stay, as to whether it is effective with the gazillions of slogs on the web now – who knows? But at the end of the day its just another way to get yourself noticed by the right person – is it neccessary to have a blog to enhance your career prospects? No, its not for everyone, but it sure can help:-)

  23. I must agree, and state that there’s a series of important concerns here. I’m going to comment on one of them. The fact of being open in a blog, and sharing your information. My idea about being open is, we should all make it a principle when launching our pursuits for employment, either through a blog or resume. I mean, ask yourself this question. Suppose you submit a resume, or an employer reads your anonymous, or false data entailed in a blog, and he/she wants to hire you for a position, you initially did’nt believe you were qualified for, based on the information provided. Then you take the job. Months later, the company just happened to be doing some verification processing to update the information as entailed on your resume, and they start calling your alledged previous employers, and become informed of something totally inconsistant with the details on your resume. Imagine yourself all settled into your career after a few months, and you get called to Human Resources, and it’s revealed that since you were’nt initially honest about something in your blog, or resume, the company feels that this is some kind of breach to their policies, and subsequently you lose a job you really like. How would this make you feel? Being honest in the beginning, and being open, renders the impression that you have nothing to hide, and it gives an up front approach of straight-forwardness in regards to your character, which serves as a good occupational reputation to have in the long run. In light of the many fraudulent practices, which dissuade us from revealing our identities, omitting, and or altering information from that of the truth via a blog, or resume, the best practice in this case scenario is to be straight up about everything. You’ll reap good rewards. Career Consultant http://www.genevasonmedia.com

  24. I must agree, and state that there’s a series of important concerns here. I’m going to comment on one of them. The fact of being open in a blog, and sharing your information. My idea about being open is, we should all make it a principle when launching our pursuits for employment, either through a blog or resume. I mean, ask yourself this question. Suppose you submit a resume, or an employer reads your anonymous, or false data entailed in a blog, and he/she wants to hire you for a position, you initially did’nt believe you were qualified for, based on the information provided. Then you take the job. Months later, the company just happened to be doing some verification processing to update the information as entailed on your resume, and they start calling your alledged previous employers, and become informed of something totally inconsistant with the details on your resume. Imagine yourself all settled into your career after a few months, and you get called to Human Resources, and it’s revealed that since you were’nt initially honest about something in your blog, or resume, the company feels that this is some kind of breach to their policies, and subsequently you lose a job you really like. How would this make you feel? Being honest in the beginning, and being open, renders the impression that you have nothing to hide, and it gives an up front approach of straight-forwardness in regards to your character, which serves as a good occupational reputation to have in the long run. In light of the many fraudulent practices, which dissuade us from revealing our identities, omitting, and or altering information from that of the truth via a blog, or resume, the best practice in this case scenario is to be straight up about everything. You’ll reap good rewards. Career Consultant http://www.genevasonmedia.com