Why Having A Personal Blog Is Absolutely Essential If You Want To Get A Job In 2015...
(...And Our Step-By-Step Beginner's Guide To Getting One Started In Under 10 Minutes)
By Jeff Gillis
You might not like what I’m about to say, but you can’t really argue it either.
Everything you know about job interviews is changing.
The interview questions are getting stranger (How should I know how many planes are in the sky over the USA at any given time?)…
Half of the interviews are in front of a computer screen instead of being in person…
And the amount of Twitter followers you have is sometimes more impressive than you being the top sales person at your last job (and certainly more important than whether or not you have a Masters Degree)…
I think we can all agree that we live in a different world than generations past.
Handshakes and phone calls have been replaced by “likes” and text messages, and so much more of one’s place in the world is defined by one’s online presence (or for our purposes, “brand”).
More than ever, a job seeker’s “brand” is driving interest in the eyes of hiring managers as they attempt to gather the most information about every candidate and ultimately make the correct hiring decision.
This has created two unique distinctions in the types of job seekers that are now battling for the same jobs.
There are the “old school” or traditional Job Seekers, whose primary method of applying for a job was to submit a cover letter and resume and cross their fingers.
And then there are the newbies… the new Job Seekers who arm themselves with a portfolio rich in both the traditional features and the wonderful new tools available to them in the online world.
Enter "Job Seeker 2.0"
While this clever classification may have just made you cringe (isn’t everything 2.0 these days?), the fact of the matter is, you probably know exactly what it implies.
There’s a new kind of Job Seeker out there applying for jobs. He/She’s a lot like the old job seeker, only a little faster, a little more efficient, and with a few more bells and whistles.
And Version 2.0 is proving that the most successful job seekers are using a different tool to secure job offers from their interviews…
A personal blog…
Don’t worry, because in the rest of this article I'm going to show you that not only is starting a personal blog ridiculously easy, but we’re going to show you exactly how you can have yours up and running in less than 10 minutes.
Applying For a Job: From The Job Seeker 2.0 Handbook
Gone are the days when simply emailing off your resume and cover letter and waiting for a phone call is the best way to secure a job interview.
According to Ken Sundheim (CEO of KAS Placement Sales and Marketing Recruiters):
More and more often, job seekers who simply rely on a resume and / or cover letter (even a LinkedIn profile isn’t as helpful as it once was) are frequently outflanked by those who carry a robust online presence.Ken Sundheim
CEO of KAS Placement Sales and Marketing Recruiters
Here’s the situation: The hiring manager of today still sits at their desk with a stack of resumes in front of them.
The difference is, the pile today is made up of two kinds of job seekers. The traditional ones who have submitted their cover letters and resumes and if they were feeling really advanced, included their newly-polished LinkedIn profile (Job Seeker 1.5?).
And then there are the Job Seeker 2.0’s. Who along with the standard pieces listed above have also included a link to their personal blog.
To what? Their “blog” or personal website.
Now for those of you that are not hip to the lingo, a blog is basically a personal website that shares both information about you (or the theme of your site) and allows you to share information in the form of blog posts (or articles), photos, videos and other media.
Jeff's Note: Personal Website vs. Blog
In reality there isn't too much different between a blog and a website these days. For the purposes of this article however, think of a personal website almost as an online business card (see example 1 below). In my opinion, this type of simple website should be the absolute bare minimum you have. A blog allows you to share more information and show your expertise more (See examples 2 and 3).
This is a good example of a "Personal Website".
- As you can see Rachael does a great job of showing off her personality and creates a "personal online hub" where people can connect with her through her other online profiles: facebook, twitter, instagram and a host of others . (Rachael is a "social media expert" so don't think you have to have as many profiles as she does!)
- She keeps the website simple. As you can see it almost acts as an online business card.
- This simple "personal website" format may be all you want to start with, and that's fine!