That is an outrageous and absurd idea, right?
Yet, countless career related experts continue to suggest that to job seekers. I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve read and heard that exact piece of advice, but it is a prevalent theme amongst the rapidly reproducing “build your brand” and “brand yourself as an expert” contingent.
They may not be saying it quite like the title above, but essentially when they advise anyone who is looking for a job to start a blog, that IS what they are implying. At any given time, any and all of us could be considered job seekers. Often we find debates about the superiority of passive candidates versus active candidates, but of course that spontaneous change in status is a moving target prompted by assorted factors.
There is no such thing as job security and even if someone is an independent consultant, freelancer or business owner, they are constantly pursuing work as well. So, in essence that expands the job seeker pool to practically anyone - of working age - that has a need or desire to exchange labor, knowledge or expertise for payment.
That being the case, whether they realize it or not, the career experts are really pimping the blog idea to a much wider percentage of the workforce. Ironically, I don’t recall ever encountering anyone that said, “What the world needs is more blogs.” Frankly, based on the underwhelming quality of many blogs, the opposite is more likely to be expressed.
Here are the primary problems I see with the incessant insistence that job seekers produce a blog. The career experts conveniently gloss over the fact that there are plenty of people that are incapable of writing well. Another issue that doesn’t seem to be prioritized in their suggestion is the need for actual subject-matter expertise as opposed to wishfully promoting that method as a way to convey credibility.
From their superficial blogging advice, one might get the impression that having an interest in something and then writing about that topic guarantees and confirms abundant awareness. Of course, these career experts almost never include instruction to produce original, thought-provoking content with a unique point of view or different take on the material.
Nope. Details, schmetails! “Just start writing a blog to build your brand” is where they typically leave it…
Finally, the worst aspect of this trend is when the career experts promote the blogging concept as a way to attract attention from recruiters, hiring managers and others who might be trolling LinkedIn and other sites when they source talent. While I don’t doubt the impact of a high quality blog attracting a target audience, I don’t believe this to be a wide-spread situation warranting that level of participation by the bulk of the population.
Thoughts? Have you found and hired anyone based on their blog? How many people do you know that have been recruited specifically due to their blog?