In the Twitter Job Search Guide, my co-authors Deb Dib and Susan Britton Whitcomb and I present you with a strategy for making the most of Twitter’s job search capacity in 15 minutes a day. While it’s easy to spend much more time than that in the Twittersphere, we strongly believe that you can do it in 15 minutes a day.
With a structured approach to setting your goals and objectives, and a plan for managing your time. I call this the “Day-Tight Twitter Job Search,” a philosophy inspired by the late physician—and famous time manager—Sir William Osler and by Steven Covey, author of Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.
The secret: You need to set aside time everyday to make it happen (Osler called organizing your time this way a “day-tight compartment”), and you need to commit to spending time everyday working on things that “aren’t urgent” but that “are important” (one of Covey’s tips for becoming “highly effective”).
As we say in the book, Twitter is what you want it to be. Why should you commit to learning Twitter and then to a 15 minute a day strategy? Here is just a sampling of the many ways you can use Twitter to rev up your job search and/or career management:
* To create your own community of individuals with similar interests
* As a forum to share your skills and expertise
* To research employers
* To connect with others who care about the same issues you do
* To acquire career advice and get free advice from experts
* As a source of job leads
Over the next few months, we’ll be sharing tips on how you can use Twitter in 15 minutes a day to make this happen, based upon the Day-Tight Twitter Job Search plan outlined in the Twitter Job Search Guide. As a start, here are five strategies and tools you can use today to manage your time on Twitter:
Determine your goals. What’s most important to you for your job search? Leads? Networking? Staying current on your field? Write your goals down and keep them close by whenever you login.
Don’t get caught up in the stream! Manage your time on Twitter. Follow—or create—lists of users by area of interest instead of looking at your overall Twitter stream. This will help you stay focused. (See the Twitter Job Search Guide for a how-to on how to manage lists and use TweepML (tweepml.org) or Listorious (Listorious.com) to find communities of shared interest or to advertise your own.
Use third-party apps to manage your stream. Applications such as TweetDeck and Seesmic allow you to create columns of favorite users; you can use these to follow accounts that post job leads in your field.
Sign up for Feeds that push out “leads” and messages to you instead of requiring you to stay “live” on Twitter. Two of our favorites include:
a. NutshellMail (nutshellmail.com) which sends you updates, mentions and Direct Messages from your Twitter account at specified intervals, and
b. TweetMyJobs (tweetmyjobs.com). Specify position title and geographic area of interest and have leads sent directly to your cell phone. (Did we mention you can also upload your resume so that employers can find you?)
View your Twitter friends as people you can connect with offline! As in any networking opportunity, the most powerful connections often take place face-to-face or through direct connection—whether it’s by phone, in person, online chat, or over Skype. Use Twitter as a way to cultivate new relationships and conversation…with a goal of connecting offline when appropriate.
Finally, here’s just one of many tips from one of my coauthors on how to get you started on keeping your Twitter experience to just 15 minutes a day:
Consider setting aside 5 minutes in the morning, 5 minutes at noon, and 5 minutes at the end of the day to check your Twitter stream or filtered list of Twitter users by area of interest. Read through 2 to 3 screens of tweets with the goal of then making 2 to 3 tweets. These might be a combination of the following:
* 1 retweet of an industry thought leader from one of your target companies (if you’re a job seeker),
* 1 @ reply to someone who tweeted something insightful (again, preferably someone from one of your target companies or a recruiter with whom you’d like to foster a connection), and
* 1 professional insight or interesting piece of information you’ve found on the Web.
If you are a power user and have additional time-saving tips, please share them below…If you’re just getting started and have more questions on how to construct your “Day-Tight Twitter Job Search,” let us know.
To Your Success,
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