Honestly, I’m not sure if I remember what my life was like before my iPhone or if I even want to. I have access to maps, internet search engines, social networks, and a variety of applications to fulfill almost every want, need, and desire. A recent study by Ball State and the Institute for Mobile Media Research found that college students are the fasting growing smart phone market segment. Not surprisingly students are using these powerful mini-computers for both their personal and academic needs. While I’m far from being a college student, these smart phones like the iPhone have made connecting, managing work and family, and networking even easier.
The ability of smartphones to link users to popular social networking sites may be another major reason college students are buying the devices in large numbers. The survey found that about 65 percent of respondents use their smartphones to access social networking sites. Oddly enough, the fastest growing age segment on FaceBook is not college students at all. InsideFaceBook.com reports that while FaceBook is still the fatest growing social media platform in the United States, almost half (50%) of US Facebook users are older than 35, and nearly one-fifth top 45.
So when and how are these experienced business professionals accessing these sites? Well, it is certainly not from their work PC. A recent survey commissioned by Robert Half found that over fifty percent of workplaces in the United States block these social networking websites while another 19% only permitted their employees to visit social networking sites like Twitter, FaceBook, Ning sites, and Myspace but only for business purposes. And with more than 3 out of 4 people owning cell phones, chances are these experienced professionals are surfing their favorite social network and catching up but not from their work computer. Your star professionals are accessing blocked websites from their smart phone computer without restriction or monitoring.
- Lost Productivity. Decision makers develop a social media and internet policy and disallow workers from viewing risky content and non-business related social media platforms. Employees work hard to stay informed on the do’s and don’t around the office and use smart phones as a way to work around. Nucleus Research reports that companies who ban FaceBook costs businesses 1.5% of lost productivity in the workplace. Don’t even get me started on the number of hours wasted by decision makers and HR professionals who sit in committee meetings discussing what sites to include, not to include, and verbiage of their internet and social media policy.
- Proxies. These are sneaky little ways to get around blocked websites. Google boasts almost 7 million websites that list the word proxy. For as little as $9.95 a month (and sometimes even free), job seekers can purchase proxy access to access company restricted websites through a proxy website. Don’t believe me, look at the Google search results for yourself. Not sure if your IT guy is up to snuff? Ask him his opinions about proxies.
- A Relevant Business Need. If more than half of the U.S. users on FaceBook are of the age 35 or older, chances are these professionals are using the site for legitimate business purposes. I often use my FaceBook network as a way to give me a quick answer to a question almost like my online Phone-a-Friend option for everything from sales leads, to phone numbers, to the latest basketball scores because my morale is directly tied to my productivity in the office.
- Stay Current. With market trends, business news, and just information in general. Several years ago I learned about a large layoff that was occurring later that morning via an email before the layoff was announced to the public. This email was sent to my personal email account which I had access to on my smart phone. My team and I were able to react quickly and before our competition. Situations like these have happened more than once. Do you want your team to miss out on a once in a lifetime opportunity for your business?
Jessica is an author, new mother, and human resources professional with a passion for recruiting and all things social media. Jessica has over 10 years of experience in human resources and recruiting. She provides businesses with social media, recruitment strategies, and human resources consulting . Jessica has been recently interviewed by Glamour Magazine, Entrepreneur.com, and Employment Digest.
Jessica’s upcoming book, Tweet This! Twitter for Business will be released in January 2010. You can also visit her website at Blogging4Jobs.com.
We are down to the final 7 posts which are listed below in no particular order. Congratulations to our bloggers! To vote for your favorite post, please leave a comment. Vote as many times as you like. Bloggers, fans, and anyone is encouraged to promote their post using social media campaigns, email blasts, word of mouth, shameless promotion, and bribing family and friends.
The winner will be announced on Friday, September 11, 2009 after the OKC Tweetup which is September 10, 2009 at the Purple Bar in Bricktown. Make sure to secure your spot by registering.
Happy voting and may the best blog post win!
According to Wikipedia, a mullet is a unisex hair style that is short in the front and long in the back. The mullet began making appearances in the popular media in the 1960s and 1970s but did not catch on with the masses until the early 1980s.
Business professionals, entrepreneurs, and job seekers can learn from those that sport this fashionable cut when managing their online brand. A popular saying when describing a mullet comes to mind-
“Business in the front. Party in the back.”
Wise words when considering your online brand as a business professional no matter what your industry, position, or responsibility level. Keep your business and professional profile in the forefront and in plain view of recruiters, prospective employers. and customers. Keep your personal life and party in the back. Users of social media need to be mindful doing your best to maintain a professional image while showing your creative and unique qualities at the same time.
Business in the Front.
Social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Blogs, and Twitter are great mediums in which to develop relationships and grab the attention of hiring managers and recruiters. Share your expertise and lead with the business in all you do. Your posts, pictures, and tweets should be at least 70% business related. Lead with interesting articles, tidbits, and information that is industry specific or related to the job in which you currently work or aspire to.
Party in the Back
The remaining 30% of your social media content can be related to your personal side but be weary. I have visited FaceBook profiles with one too many drunk pictures and tweets leading me to search for talent elsewhere. If you are unsure if something is inappropriate, ask yourself if your mother would approve. Items that your mother would approve and/or tolerate are generally appropriate to display on your social media profiles. Social media is all about interacting and developing relationships. I encourage you to tweet or post comments seeking input and feedback from others. Commonalities make you interesting which lead to engaging conversations with persons from a wide variety of backgrounds.
Unfortunately, for Dog, the Bounty Hunter, this advice has come a little too late. He is a good example of why your social media mullet is so important.
**To vote for Jessica Miller-Merrell’s blog post, please leave a comment below. You can learn more about Jessica and her job search and social media blog at www.blogging4jobs.com.
With a Little Help from my Friends–I’ll either land or lose a job
Everything that was old soon becomes new again. In today’s job search, the buzz word is “networking”. While many see it as a rather new element of the job search, just as Ringo, Paul, et al sang so many years ago – - With a Little Help from my Friends – - in today’s world it is about making a connection with someone. The fun today is you can make a connection electronically, in the comfort of your home with your favorite at home attire. Remember if you are connected by Skype and a camera – - you may be seen ‘round the world in a less-than flattering way. Also, everything you say electronically may be transmitted by someone in such a way that it goes around the world – - Think Twice, Type Once and hesitate – - awhile – - before you hit the send button.
Also realize that just as you “Can’t Buy Me Love”, you can’t “Buy me a Job”. But you can make connections that will prove invaluable with today’s job search. And, if you stay in touch – - they can prove even more valuable 5 to 10 years from now.
There’s an interesting article in the Forbes Magazine’s Sept. 7th edition: http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2009/0907/power-women-09-facebook-sheryl-sandberg.html. The dilemma today is that everyone wants to be connected, to network and to reach out to family and friends. The challenge is how does that help from my friends translate to $$$ for the people behind the scenes who’ve written the connections that make Facebook so much fun.
Before they become profitable, Facebook’s theme song could be “A Hard Day’s Night” as they grapple with connectivity and profitability.
For each of us, it will be how well to be want to be connected and with whom??? We want help from our friends – - but not all our friends. It is going to be an interesting journey for everyone.
**To vote for Kay Stout’s blog post, please vote below. Kay is a Oklahoma based career coach. You can learn more about Kay by visiting her blog, www.anotherpointofview.typepad.com.
Let the truth be known that you secretly play air guitar in your living room to Yellow Submarine when you get home from work, but don’t worry that won’t have to be the case for long.
With the Rock Band: Beetles version making its debut, it only logical to check out the game for the first time at OKC’s September 10th Tweet up.
OKC Tweet up’s are a way to meet people you have connected with via Twitter. Usually, you connect with someone online after you have met them in person, but this event gives people the opportunity to meet beyond cyberspace. One hundred and forty characters can only be used for so long. This event is the time to meet face to face.
Located on the second floor of Nonna’s Euro-American Ristorante, Purple Bar is the scene for this month’s tweet up. This sleek bar with unique lighting provides a cozy and great meeting spot.
Twitter has hit the ground running in 2009. The site has recently saved lives in medical procedures, informed people about in climate weather and even got someone out of jail.
Guest speakers, door prizes and networking are all going to take place at this upcoming event.
Oh, and don’t forget a little bit of Rock Band action too!
More and more businesses are leaning towards social networking and Twitter is a great place to start.
Register at http://www.okctweetup.com to be a part of Twitter history.
**To vote for Tess Mack’s blog post, please leave a comment below. You can visit her blog, and learn all about her recent relo back to Oklahoma at www.lifeontheolist.blogspot.com.
My Summer of Twitter
And Other Ways I’ve Stayed Professionally Connected During Maternity Leave
by Jennifer Wheeler
Here I sit – my one-month old sleeping peacefully beside me, my three-year-old napping in the next room – as a giant pile of laundry waits to be folded. Rather than tackle the apparel threatening to overtake my bed, I flip open my laptop and catch up on blogging.
I vowed at the beginning of my maternity leave that I wouldn’t let my creative juices run dry just because I wasn’t at the office. If anything, I decided to use this time to branch out into new areas of creativity, making connections with new publications, blogs and websites, and hopefully jazzing up my resume in the process.
Don’t get me wrong – between two kids, I am finding it a bit more difficult than I anticipated to devote time each day to writing projects. So I pride myself on even just 15 minutes spent writing or connecting with new people about writing.
In the time I’ve enjoyed at home, I’ve come across a number of websites that I highly recommend. They keep me entertained; connected to people in my profession; and abreast of the latest events in my area, as well as the world. Here they are in no particular order:
This site, affiliated with Mamapedia.com, is a great go-to space for any question you can think of regarding just about anything you can think of. Simply create an account, post a query based on your zip code, and watch the responses/recommendations flood in. Most queries are parenting-related, but I have also found my lawn service via Mamasource, as well as gotten advice on a number of pregnancy-related topics.
Mamasource.com is currently looking for bloggers to be featured on Mamapedia.com, on Twitter, and via its daily e-newsletter – a great way to get some blogging under your belt and help other moms in the process. Follow @mamasource on Twitter for more info, or contact Mary McBride at email@example.com for more information.
And speaking of Twitter, it is now my (@SmyrnaGirl) favorite social networking website, hands down. My time is limited, so 140 characters worth of communication is just right for my attention span. There are definitely some things to know about how to use the site, but you can easily pick them up once you start following people, and gain followers yourself. Connections begin to snowball once you start sending out updates. A few of my favorite people to follow, in terms of staying connected to like-minded professionals, are @StephanieALloyd, @RachelWriter, @swfrost, and @Keppie_Careers. This is based on the fact that they tweet useful information often.
It was through Twitter that I found out about my very first tweetup – the Atlanta Chicks Tweetup, a networking event hosted by the first three ladies mentioned above, taking place July 16th in Buckhead. Visit http://anyvite.com/0kum8ug60l for more info.
There are also some great people/organizations to follow that will help keep you informed of family friendly activities in the metro area, such as @AtlantaParent, @centennial_park, @downtown_atl, @PopRadar, and @ATLINtownPaper.
Of course there are also LinkedIn, Facebook and MySpace – though some techies are quick to relegate it to the same bin that contains NetScape and AOL. All three are great tools for keeping in touch with professional and personal acquaintances.
You might find yourself becoming addicted to any of these sites if the only person you’ve got to talk to all day is your newborn!
**To vote for Jennifer’s blog post, please leave a comment. You can also visit her at the Atlanta Working Mom Examiner at Examiner.com.
by Gilley Aguilar
Is it just me or did Twitter come just a little late in life? Have you ever thought about what it would’ve been like if Twitter had been around in the sixties? Of course that would’ve meant that computers and the internet would’ve had to been around first. You can follow almost any of your favorite celebrities to find out what they are doing. Most of the time it’s pretty boring stuff. Yesterday Matthew Perry was making a sandwich around noon. It was very nice to know that he was doing that.
What if someone like The Beatles had Twitter? The Beatles of course, was one of the biggest bands in history and sold millions of records. Would it have been the same if we were able to know everything that was going on behind closed doors? Would McCartney have said something like,
“McCartney So just sitting around with my mates, @Lennon, @RStarr and @Harrison writing a song about a yellow submarine. I wanted to go with a black submarine but was out voted”
12 minutes ago from Tweetdeck
Or maybe something like,
“Harrison @Lennon is bringing over his new girlfriend @Ono. I think I am really going to like her. She will really help out the band.”
1 hour ago from Twitterfon
I think not knowing what really went on is something that is what makes them great. If we knew what bands were doing in the sixties behind closed doors more then what we did, then I think the parents might not have been so keen on their music being in the house.
Or what if they had facebook accounts? Would we be logging on only to see another stupid quiz that John Lennon filled out to tell us what kind of rock he is? Or what “sex position” he would be?
Maybe it is for the best that Twitter was developed a little bit later for this generation.
**Gilley Aguilar is also from Oklahoma. Please vote for Gilley by leaving a comment below. You can visit his website thegilleyaguilarproject.wordpress.com.
by jennifer james mccollum, apr/@firstname.lastname@example.org
There are places I’ll remember
All my life though some have changed…
–From In My Life by the Beatles
Rob Crissinger and Tristan Cornett play urbanfutbol on the tarmac in front of the Oklahoma City Civic Center. Urbanfutbol is the byproduct of the Twitter phenomenon.
More pictures of urbanfutbol can be seen at http://www.flickr.com/photos/28723966@N05/sets/72157621912742329.
The sporty tweet-up also has its own Web site, www.urbanfutbol.com.
In his book, The Outliers, one of the great Generation X thinkers, Malcolm Gladwell, establishes the premise for his book through the story of Roseto, Pennsylvania. He cites research done by a professor at the University of Oklahoma in the 1950s who discovered that the Italian immigrants of Roseto had dramatically lower instances of heart disease based on a surprising fact: they were surrounded by a rich community.
Twitter is Not a Mystery
Much has been written about Twitter, and many people remain confused or ambivalent about it, but Twitter is not a mystery. Twitter, not unlike Roseto, is just community.
Like the Beatles song, in our lives, places change. Twitter is just a new place. It’s the laundry mat without the washing machines where you pass by a stranger and ask, “What building is that going up across the street?” Twitter is the coffee shop without the expensive lattes, where you shoot the breeze and come away a little more enlightened (or annoyed). It is the lecture hall where people absorb sophisticated ideas. And, it is the annual Christmas letter by which you share adoring pictures of your children and brag about your accomplishments.
Participants, tweeps as they are called, get to build community 140 characters at a time. Tweeps tweet at their own pace, several times throughout the day; all day long or just once in awhile. Thus, the community is there when their dogs get sick; when they burn breakfast or pass a wreck on the highway. It’s there when icons die or when someone discovers the next $1 million idea.
Tweeps give back to their communities in a variety of ways; after all, ideas are the new commerce. Twitter is in no short supply of brilliant ideas. These are found via links the community provides. They may be to blog posts, news articles, photographs, etc. They even exist in those brief 140 characters strung together to create an impact, evoke or entertain.
Like any community, Twitter is about showing up. Communicating involves not only sharing, but listening. Twitter is reply and reciprocity, initiative and engagement. It is the new playground for democracy. Openness is rewarded, boundaries prized. Twitter is even taken off-screen as people meet-up in real life (tweet-ups). This is where the real magic of Twitter becomes apparent.
Average Age of Tweeps: 40
The average age of users on Twitter is 40. That’s my generation – Generation X — those of us born between 1961 and 1981 (by broadest definition). Gen X is said to be the most neglected generation in American history. The experts say the Gen X childhood and teen years were marked by profound loneliness (all those cartoons, all that cereal), and followed by an even lonelier, more stressful adulthood (the worst recession in 75 years; booms and busts, and oh, BTW, how am I going to pay for my kids’ college education?) Of course, nobody will admit to being lonely or stressed on Twitter, maybe because we’re less so all the time.
Maybe that’s why Generation X dominates social networking. It has never, in the history of mankind been easier to make friends or find like-minded people. In any given week, I engage with members of my community from Long Island Sound to Ada, Oklahoma.
Several weeks ago, Rob Crissigner, an independent public relations practitioner, pulled together a group of Oklahoma Cityans to play soccer on the tarmac in front of Oklahoma City’s historic Civic Center. Urbanfutbol, as it is dubbed, is the outbirth of casual tweets, just one of the innumerable byproducts of the Twitter phenomenon. People show up one night a week after work to kick the ball around for 30 minutes. They decompress. They build ties.
This isn’t just bored strangers gathering together. This is the playground of make-something-happen and it started on Twitter. This is tilling and tending by the City’s up and coming thinkers, tekkies and creative types who show up and play hard. Just below the surface everyone is aware of the unknown possibilities that exist. Twitter is the fertile soil that yields collaboration. Someday, these people will build the City’s first subway or light rail; they’ll discover new forms of citizen participation and write new laws. Alliances are forming fast and Twitter is the culture to which they owe credit. Twitter is where the early-adopting mindset gathers in droves. Twitter is the playground of the Creative Class we heard so much about a few years ago – that demographic paramount to a thriving city.
Like the Beatles sang, there are people and things that go before us; lovers and friends we still recall. Some have gone, some remain. But, all have their moments. Right now, the moment belongs to Twitter. Don’t let the moment pass you by.
**JenX is an Oklahoma blogger. To vote for Jenn’s blog post, please leave a comment below. You can visit her blog at www.jenx67.com.
by Stephanie A. Lloyd
A recent post by The Bloggess caught my attention: “25 things about twitter that are pissing me off.”
I can’t say that I agree with every item on her list but I can definitely relate to a few.
People who are making me her us mad:
“People who have their twitter account marked private because they don’t want people to read it. YOU ARE ON THE INTERNET. Also, what you’re drinking at Starbucks is not national security. It makes me want to create a page for my cat and make it private because it’s that stupid.”
Now, there are people who use Twitter to communicate with a select group of people or do not want the world to know that they hate their boss / the company they work for / the product they sell / their wife etc. While it’s good not to broadcast these things I wonder if the locked account people know that people who are allowed to follow them can and do retweet their stuff and broadcast it to the world for them. (Oops. You didn’t think of that, did you.)
“People who I’m really good friends with on twitter but they never post anything to let me know if they are a girl or a boy and their picture is of a dolphin or a rainbow and I want to talk about them to my husband and I’m all “Oh, one of my best friends on twitter is hilarious and you would love him or her” and then Victor’s all “You don’t know the sex of one of your best friends?” and I’m all ” Well…their picture is a dolphin” and he just shakes his head.”
Seriously. Please. Are you a human or are you a picture of a goat.
“People who aren’t on twitter and think they’re better than me, because I was you a year ago and guess what? I had a lot more spare time then. But now I have 11,000 friends. And only half of them are robots. The other half are dolphins.”
And you know exactly who these people are because they refer to the act of using twitter as “twittering.”
“People who ask questions that no one cares the answer to. Like, bad question: “Hey everybody! What’s your favorite color?” Good question: “How many lemurs could you fight off if the lemurs were really mad and you were wearing a suit made out of meat?”
Other bad questions: “does anybody want to buy my ebook?” and “how do you work this twitter thing?”
“People who answer that question “I <3 lemurs!!! They R QT’s!!!” Just stop it. You don’t get to use twitter anymore.”
Twitter is not AOL and this is not 1995.
“People who ask me to follow them over and over except I’m already following them but I can’t DM them that because they aren’t following me.”
This one’s on my Top 10 Most Annoying Things in Life list.
“Practically everyone who has an auto-response set up to welcome followers. I don’t need you to tell me I’m following you. I just followed you. Also, you only have 16 followers. Just how busy are you?
Exactly. Also, I have yet to see an auto-response that made me think “Well isn’t that a good idea!”
“People under age 16 on twitter. No. Just look what you did to Myspace.”
Two words. PARENTAL CONTROLS.
**Stephanie comes to us from Atlanta, GA. To vote for Stephanie’s post, please leave a comment below. Don’t forget to visit her website, www.radiantveracity.com.
We are proud to announce the first ever Blogger Contest at OKCTweetup.com. Win an Ultra HD Digital Camera valued at $200! The winning blog post will be featured on Dave Rhea’s Social Media Blog at The Journal Record.
Bloggers must submit their blog post in a word document with picture to Jessica@xceptionalhr.com by Friday, August 28th, 2009. Because this contest is to promote our Sept. 10th OKC Tweetup, “Tweet and Shout”, blog entries are limited to the topics of Twitter and the Beatles.
The top 7 blog posts will be announced and posted to our site on Monday, August 31st, 2009 and voting will begin. The winner will be announced during on September 11, 2009.
- One entry per blogger. All bloggers are eligible.
- Bloggers submit original content to Jessica@xceptionalhr.com by August 28, 2009. Include your full name, website, and contact information in the body of your email submission. Blog submission must be in word document with pictures included. Eligible topics include Twitter and the Beatles.
- The top 7 posts will be announced on August 31, 2009.
- Visitors to okctweetup.com will vote by leaving a comment on their favorite blog post.
- Vote as many times as you like. Bloggers are free to promote their post however they like.
- The blog post with the most comment wins!
- We are not responsible for copy write or other liability. Make sure your post is an original work.
- Winner will be announced on September 11, 2009. Prize will be mailed or available for pickup to the winner.
**A special thanks to Brad Stone and Cisco for the Ultra HD Flip Camera!