Six Pixels of Separation - The Blog
July 19, 2010 3:33 PM

4 Ways To Not Reek Of Desperation

When you're desperate it's hard to win business, get that job, market a product or do anything (like find a mate).

The trouble is that most people who are desperate, can't even muster up the levity to see, feel and hear it in themselves. When you're desperate, your confidence drops, so whether you're looking to meet someone, get a job or close a piece of business, nobody wants to connect with someone who reeks of desperation - and therefore lacks confidence in whatever it is that they're doing.

If you can't find a job, there are plenty of things that you can do.

What most people fail to realize is that while they are looking for work, their full-time job is actually making themselves as knowable as possible (Hugh McGuire over at the The Book Oven and one of the co-hosts of Media Hacks once brilliantly stated, "don't Blog to be know. Blog to be knowable"). Our work/world has changed. If you are looking for work, pay attention to this...

4 Ways to not Reek of Desperation:

  1. Publish. Whether it's in text, images, audio or video and whether it's a Blog, flickr, YouTube, Twitter or a Podcast, there is absolutely zero reason why you should not be highlighting how you think, and express yourself through one of these many online channels (btw, it's free too). If someone is truly interested in you, they are going to do a quick online search to learn more. If the number one organic search result is not your own personal space of what truly makes you unique, you are failing yourself... miserably. This is especially true if you're out of work, because time is not an issue. Start publishing about something (anything!) that you are passionate about. It doesn't even have to be related to what you're pursuing. You're simply demonstrating (publicly) how you think. Pushing this further: who would not want somebody who has an audience/community as a part of their team?
  2. Read. What was the last book that you read related to the industry you're interested in? If you are not up-to-date on the latest book, or if suffer from the fact that Google is actually making you stupid (a la Nicholas Carr), what about Blog postings, industry magazines, general business magazines, etc... If you're looking to be hired and you're not up to snuff on the latest trends, thoughts and innovations, why should anybody bring you in? This is on you, and if you don't like to read, get over it. It's an integral part of learning and growing. Plus, you can cheat: hope over to iTunes and subscribe to both audio and video Podcasts that serve your industry and get informed.
  3. Community. What have you done in your community? If you're not working, why are you not an active participant in bettering the community? This can be both social causes or industry related ones. Better yet, why not volunteer  your time to the organization by specifically applying your professional skill-sets? Imagine both the amazing work you can do to make the world a better place while also meeting some amazing individuals who are also contributing their time. In my experience, the volunteers on the many boards and organizing committees are usually the most fascinating people in the world (and can probably help you network and connect if you're truly great at what you do).
  4. Lead. No one is going to do this for you, and you may not be able to get into the groove of someone else's community or charity, so why not start your own? Look at how the whole unconference movement started with BarCamp. This handful of people had passion, commitment and the drive to start something new by being/becoming a leader (which they probably didn't even realize they were doing at the time). Why not head over to Meetup and start a group or join/help to lead an existing one? Leadership doesn't have to happen in the physical world either, you can also head over to Ning and start your own online community or even something as simple as group on Facebook or an open dialogue using Twitter (look at what #BlogChat is doing for inspiration). Bottom-line: there are way too many opportunities that exist for you right now to become an industry leader. All you have to do is figure out the area of expertise that's right for you and put the long, hard hours of work into building it.

Do you see how this works?

Nobody owes you anything. Social Media offers you tools, access and opportunity that were not available to a single person within a specific niche until very recently. It's up to you... and it's incumbent on you to be successful. As Jeffrey Gitomer says, you don't have to ask your Daddy for an allowance anymore. Translate that: you don't need permission... it's on you to do this, and no HR person can do this for you. So, while everyone else is letting their Blogs lapse or are spending their time tweeting for the sole purpose of gaming their numbers, why not use the channels to empower yourself to be become more knowable and interesting?

What do you think? What would you add to this list?

By Mitch Joel


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