To Blog or not to Blog, That Is the Question

The Job Hunt

After reading my post on job satisfaction, Littlest Bird emailed and asked why I hadn’t blogged more about being unemployed, looking for work, and the entire job search process back in November.

Here’s why: Blogging under your own name is VERY different than blogging anonymously. Anyone who knows your name can find your website with a few clicks of the mouse. It’s made even easier when you have unique name like mine.

The day after parting ways with my old job I started sending out resumes and queering friends and family about any writing-related jobs they might know about. Within 48 hours I noticed an uptick in Google and Yahoo queries for my name – most of which could be traced back to potential employers. It was amazing to watch how many potential employers were spending anywhere from one minute to 20 minutes on my website.

This, in and of itself, wasn’t a bad thing. I haven’t posted anything that would make an employer think twice about hiring me or calling me into an interview. (At least I don’t think I have.) And where I was mostly applying for writing-related jobs the fact that this website generally highlights some of my more creative writing efforts tends to be a good thing. Additionally, there’s a hidden URL on this website that contains my professional writing portfolio. (Don’t bother searching for it. It’s password protected.)

Based on the number of interviews and job offers I had from employers who ended up on my website (both the public and password protected section), I’d say the website was by far more of a positive than a negative. I even had one employer bring up the password protected and public part of this website during an interview and we talked about some of the documents and blog entries I had written. (He made an attractive job offer the next day.)

Yet this website could have just as easily been a negative. For example, the last thing I wanted was potential employers to know how good or poorly the job search was going. I didn’t want someone to come to the site and see that I had multiple offers and decide not to even call and see if I was interested in working for them or, conversely, see that the job hunt was going bad use that as leverage to lowball any salary or benefit things if a job offer was extended.

I’m also under the opinion whether your blogging anonymously or under your real name, what you write about and say about others says a lot about you so I generally try to blog and post things that I wouldn’t have a problem with sharing with a stadium filled with people I don’t know. It’s not that I care what people think about me, rather, I believe that if you wouldn’t spread malicious gossip or say certain things when actual people are present, you should have the same decorum on your website or blog.

It’s not that I didn’t want to blog about it -- I just thought it wasn’t in my best interest to keep those thoughts and feelings private. And, yes, I did keep a detailed account of that time. However those are safely stored in my journal to which only Marathon Girl has access.

Everyone else can read about it after I’m dead. :-)