By and large, I really enjoy our ITintheD.com events. I do. I take no small measure of pride in what we’ve managed to build not just since the group was founded, but particularly over the course of the last 12 months. We’ve gone from a group of maybe twenty to thirty like-minded individuals getting together once a month for a drink or two while sharing IT war stories to a group with more than thirteen hundred members on LinkedIn that’s helped dozens and dozens of people find new jobs as a result of our events that range from 120+ people at a “smaller” event to 400+ people at one of our Pink Slip Parties. Sure, we still swap tales about what crazy sales guy promised the impossible to which client, what techie completely jacked up an entire environment by not following an implementation spec that the business team slaved over for months, or which insane project manager doesn’t understand the difference between “stretch date” and “milestone” – but we’ve become more than that these days. It’s still about networking, but it’s also about using those networking opportunities to help people find new jobs.
We do everything that we can to help out people looking for a new job…but we can’t do everything. We have great recruiters that are dedicated to filling positions showing up at our events, posting jobs in our group, and letting us know when they’ve made contact with someone solid. Dozens and dozens of people have taken advantage of these opportunities to make connections and landed new gigs over the course of the past 12 months in particular. The people that have landed those new jobs all have one thing in common – they’ve been active. They email us their resumes to get out to the recruiters. They pay attention to our email blasts and follow up on them. They hit our jobs tab of our LinkedIn group on a regular basis to see what’s new. They follow the advice from our blogs. Most importantly, they come to our events. They make every effort to make contact and follow up with the recruiters. Like I said – they’re active.
Then there are…”the others”. The ones that don’t understand that the world really doesn’t owe you a living, and that nothing’s going to be handed to you on a silver platter. The ones that I’m pretty sure are driving around in the car over there to the side…even if it’s only in their own minds. The ones that don’t understand what the group is all about, and don’t “get” what social networking means. For whatever reason yet, they haven’t figured out that blindly firing resumes into the cloud of the internet is nowhere nearly as effective as getting face-time with a recruiter that can recommend you for a job that’s not even been posted yet. The ones that don’t realize that the world has changed, whether they wanted it to or not.
I honestly can’t figure out if they infuriate me or sadden me.
The ones that say that they really want to find a new job…but there’s always something more important to be doing than coming to one of our events. One of whom actually emailed me…while our Pink Slip Party at Commune was going on…to let me know that they’d gotten confused, wound up over at the BlackFinn thinking it was there…and then ran into some friends so he was just going to stay there instead of heading over to Commune and could I just send him a list of recruiters that are at the event?
The ones that read a job posting that I’ve posted on behalf of a recruiter…with the recruiter’s contact information contained in the post…and then send their resume to me instead of the recruiter. And don’t get me wrong, sending me your resume is fine…but when the recruiter’s put their contact information out there about a specific job with instructions to follow up with them directly…well, you’ve just failed the reading and comprehension portion of the job seeker test.
The ones that reply to one of our email blasts on the day of an event telling me that they don’t know how to RSVP…even though the email they’re replying to has the links to RSVP right in it.
Or the one that has been a member of our group on LinkedIn since mid-2009…and yet replied to the email blast the day of the January event telling us that they needed “more than 24 hours notice about stuff like this”. Guess those emails over the previous weeks weren’t enough.
[sigh] I honestly don’t know how much easier we could make it.
And I know this isn’t everyone. This isn’t a grand, sweeping indictment of everyone that doesn’t make it to our events – as I said, with over 1300 members on LinkedIn alone, we’d be needing much bigger venues if everyone DID show up. However, those “passive” members aren’t the ones that are showing up in my inbox telling me that they got wrapped up playing Call of Duty 4 with their friends on XBox Live and just couldn’t bring themselves to make it to the event to meet anyone.
Really? Anyone seen this happen lately?
Didn’t think so.
Maybe it’s just me. Whenever I’ve been looking for a job, this is basically what I see on every corner:
Until next time…