Monday, October 11, 2010

Your blog is your resume

While reading Alexis Grant's blog, I came across an idea that made perfect sense. Your blog can be your resume. Maybe not in a literal sense, but in a practical, opportunistic sense, it does.

Face it. When you apply for a job these days, your employer will Google you. That can be a good thing or a bad thing - or a doesn't matter thing. Let me explain.

Hopefully, your blog incorporates your strengths and major interest(s). The employer gets a sterile resume from you, full of nothing but dates, names and history. Little on that resume reflects you as a person. You may argue that a resume demonstrates that you can take responsibility, hold a job, perform duties, but does it show how well you'd fit in a company? What if the employer wants to see more of the real you?

We put on a front in an interview. We put all the right words on a resume. But on a blog, we reveal more of our actual traits to include humor, intelligence and writing ability. Pictures show even more. If I were an employer, I'd Google someone before I read the application, or immediately soon after.

As a writer, a blog makes more sense than in most professions. Newspaper editors, publishers, agents, and regular employers seeking your writing talent, will scan cyberspace for more proof of your abilities. Let's say you and your competitor vie for the same position. Both of you have respectable writing credits. But when the employer Googles both your names, what will he find?

A good blog shows:

Creative Savvy - Whether sassy, poignant or journalistic, a blog takes creative spirit.

Reliability/Consistency - Blogs take dedication. Regular posting of good material speaks for your dedication.

Ability to Communicate - A blog uses a voice conducive to easy communication. Your readership speaks to that ablity to connect to people, and keep them coming back for more.

Expertise - A steady blog demonstrates knowledge. It's important that your blog provide take-away value, and if you offer that assistance continually, you inevitably flash your expertise, knowledge and skills.

Your blog can show your good, bad, up, down, smart, stupid and crazy side. Realize that all sorts of people read it, including those that don't care about your favorite football team or how marvelous dinner was at a new restaurant. While those topics aren't bad, how you write about them and reflect upon yourself, tells people volumns about who you are. But if you use a blog to expand your abilities as a potential employee, you could pave your way to employment.

Make your blog more than fun. Make it work for you. And while you're at it, hyperlink your blog to your resume, so your employer can have all he needs to hire you at his fingertips.


Carol J. Alexander said...

I believe this to be true, Hope. Likewise, I've done the same thing with prospective employers. After having several articles stolen by online publications, I was quite skeptical when another offered me a regular position. You can bet I thoroughly checked them out.

Alexis Grant said...

I love how you took this idea and ran with it! It really deserves the fleshing-out treatment (think I just created that word) that you gave it. This is *so* important not only in the world of job-hunting, but for any professional future, yet bloggers sometimes overlook it.

When I was job-hunting, one potential employer did not call any of the references I'd suggested, and instead found people online who knew me and asked for their opinion of my work. Judging someone based on their blog is just that smart. Rather than looking at a writer's clips, the one they provide, an employer gets a far better idea of what you're like (and what your *unedited* writing is like) from your blog.


Susan said...

I like to think all you wrote pertaining to blogs is true, Hope. That's a good idea to put the blog address on a resume. Great idea! Susan

Barb Hodges said...

Hope, thank you for your observations. Your words gave me alot to think about.

Paul Callaghan said...

You are absolutely right with this Hope. My blog has running for less than two weeks and I have already been approached to write paid posts for another blog. I also have my writing available elsewhere on the net and it has been used by several editors and clients to assess my skills.
I think one thing to remember with blogs is that they are not twitter and so should not have the same shortcuts in language that are acceptable there. If you always put your best work out, even on your blog, you will portray yourself as someone who is worth hiring.

Karen Lange said...

Thank you, Hope. This is encouraging and reinforces what I've been thinking. I actually just got a part time online teaching job through connections made on my blog.
Have a great week,

BECKY said...

Yep...If our blog is building our platform, then it obviously is a huge part of our resume.

Professional Writing said...

Who are you? You know your own name, and so do a select circle of other writers and editors with whom you've worked. Blogs are dynamic media. Your blog can act as a constantly-updated resume.

Linda said...

"Gulp!" I hope the blogging water's deep 'cuz I just dove in head first. So inspired when I stumbled upon the FundsforWriter's site & Hope's Blog, I started a blog of my own, two days ago. First excited now scared spitless. Professional writer or dreamer's pasttime. Time will tell...

D.G. Hudson said...

Some days, Hope, I need a boost like this that shows the value of maintaining a blog. I don't post as often as some, but I do try to put quality into what I'm posting with pix that highlight the topic I'm writing about. I use my own photographs, since I'm an avid photographer.

Thanks for showing the reasons to continue blogging. I keep coming back for the wisdom which you share on your blog.