Martin Yate: Build A Career Management Database From Your Social Networking Leads (stay organized)

martin_yate_headshotI recently read this article posted on LinkedIn by Martin Yate: IS YOUR USE OF SOCIAL NETWORKING FOR JOB SEARCH PRODUCTIVE?

In the article, Martin (who you may have heard of before – he has authored a number of best selling career books (in the Knock em Dead series)), has a section titled: Build A Career Management Database From Your Social Networking Leads

I want to share some of what he wrote, and my thoughts:

>> Building a career management database on your desktop now, and nurturing it over the long haul, is a critical component of your long-term survival and financial security.

Yep, that’s what we have been preaching for almost nine years now.  But don’t build it on your “desktop.”  In the last nine years how many PCs have you gone through?  How many files, folders, programs, etc. have you lost by switching from one computer to another?  Instead of building this critical component of your long-term survival and financial security” on your desktop, build your long-term database in JibberJobber.  It’s an absolute no-brainer.  The desktop is not the place to put your critical component (aka, your career management database).

>> In addition to job postings, you should create folders for target companies that gather together all the insights you unearth about that company and your contacts within it when they are not already captured as networking contacts on your social media sites. You should capture the same information about recruitment firms and your contacts within them.

Absolutely.  Most job seekers start their tracking system thinking they need to track information about the jobs they are applying for, and hoping to interview for.  This is important, but I would suggest that it’s more important to track (1) relationships and communication with network contacts, and (2) information you gather about potential target companies.

Again, don’t use “folders.”  Use JibberJobber.

Here’s one point I disagree with… Martin says to track information about “your contacts … when they are not already captured as networking contacts on your social media sites.”

I think that a social network site, like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Xing, etc. is a great place to find contacts, research contacts, gather information… but it IS NOT the place to track information such as when you met them, what conversations you’ve had with them, when you were supposed to follow-up with them, how strong your relationship is, who introduced you to them, who they introduced you to, etc.  These are all things that you aren’t going to do in a social networking tool, but you can do all of them in JibberJobber.

JibberJobber is like a hub for collecting and tracking information that you glean from other sources, whether from various social sites, news articles, job postings (which sometimes have names and email addresses), face to face meetings, etc.  Don’t let the whimsical features of a social platform decided whether you can or cannot track this stuff the right way – use the social tools to collect information, and then go to JibberJobber to record everything you want to track.

>> Additions to your professional knowledge base should be made at the time they accrue. For example, when you establish contact with recruiters who work in your industry, save all details about the person and the company in a document, and store the document within the appropriate folder at the end of your day. If you don’t capture the information for retrieval as you gather it, you’ll remember it for a couple of days, but you’ll have long forgotten everything when next you need it a year or two down the road.

That is absolutely right.  Don’t worry if you haven’t been tracking this information… or if in the future you forget to track something here or there.  You aren’t going to track 100% of everything you come across.  Don’t beat yourself up if you miss stuff.  But the more you track, the more valuable your tracking tool (aka, JibberJobber) becomes to you.

>> Organize yourself to capture information today that you can use throughout your work life and you create an important foundation for your future security.

Absolutely.  This is why you should use JibberJobber.  Remember, JibberJobber is not a job search band-aid… that is, you scrap it when you land your next gig. JibberJobber is a long term career management tool that will be with you during your twelve to fifteen transitions!

 Martin says: “…statistics predict between twelve and fifteen job and career changes throughout your work life. Carefully storing and organizing the professionally relevant intelligence you capture during this job search will supply your next transition with a starting point far superior to anything you have at your fingertips today.

Organizing.  Far Superior.  Good stuff.  If you aren’t serious about using JibberJobber yet, this article should be the little nudge you’ve needed.