Oh LinkedIn….our love/hate relationship continues. I need you, I don’t want to need you, but I do for my recruiting role. You’re a resource for competitive intelligence and every once in a while, spark a great conversation with a potential job seeker or peer. And now….now in this crazy economic time, you bring me so many additional things.
The Weird Network Invites. You know what I mean, the ones where you look at and you’re like, that’s a spammer. Sure it is. Of course there’s also the neighbor who is politically opposite of you, in a radical way, that connects and fills your feed with their rant of the day. I will of course share information that will enlighten their perspective, because that’s me, I’m a sharer. I dare say I might mute them too, but where’s the fun in that And let’s not forget the invite becoming more frequent as downsizing continues, the former co-worker who couldn’t give you the time of day when you worked together, but a year later is all over your feed and DMs.
The Vendors. I got you, it’s another day, another dollar. We’re all trying to survive and stay in business. And I will say this as kindly as I can, I’m a Recruiting Manager. Not anything else, okay, that’s not true, I also have Diversity & Inclusion on my team, but Benefits? Nope. Comp? Nope. Relocation….come on….we’re in COVID 19 so we’re all working from home. Good luck and God bless, but I’m not interested. I will find you if I need you. Otherwise…we end up in this cycle where you pursue me hard and really don’t enjoy the many ways I say no thank you.
The Education. Oddly enough, I don’t get a lot of enlightening education moments off of LinkedIn anymore. My feed seems to be like a business Facebook, but not quite that, and it’s amazing how many people have drafted an expert white paper on “Returning to Work after COVID 19”. Seriously, I appreciate the advice, but it may be a little too late as HR departments have had to pivot quickly depending on the state they reside in and stay at home orders have been put in place with limited notice.
The Personal Press Release. This development is very interesting to me, I feel like a voyeur as I read about people’s last days, and everyone they’d like to thank and how they’re excited for the future. There have been some instances that have been heart breaking, especially as I know that so many of the people making these announcements have been laid off. It seems like days, weeks, months go by and the next update comes in with what I saw another LinkedIn user deem as an individual’s Oscar moment, announcing their new role and thanking Mom, Dad, the boss that laid them off and so on. And of course the Recruiter in me makes note. Certainly easier than having to go through the association and trade sites to see who moved where.
I’m thinking of all of the above, the Personal Press Release is the brainchild of an out-placement firm (under the guise of “use your network”). But I’m not sure, maybe this is just the next step in our “look at me” culture. Will you take that step, at the next pivot in your career, and become your own publicist, with a publicly demonstrated hello or goodbye in the professional network? I don’t think I will, but I’m a private person, but am deeply curious to see how this progresses and how our employers react. If they even do.
Kelly is the Recruitment Manager for Westat, a leading social science research organization headquartered in Rockville, Maryland.