Your 21st century career will NOT be as an employee

My grand-mother had a clear ‘rule’ – none of us should work for a family-business. We should all go out and work in another business or organization.  My grandmother was obviously fed up with family businesses. She had been burned by them a few times. And I think she made the right call.

I think we should go further though. We should all aim to have our own business.

Is it the Talmud where we are advised to join an established business? That is good advice. We should acknowledge what works in the world and work with it.

But I think we should also aspire to autonomy. Many organizations work on a tournament system. You have to start in round one and work your way up. Should you want to move to another organization, you cannot carry credits from the previous rounds with you!

We need a way to aggregate our experience into a stronger and stronger portfolio.

Online portfolios are a good start. Planning our careers as if they are a business is another.

But as employment law is very clumsy and big organizations are more interested in subordination than developing your ongoing value, isn’t it a good idea to register yourself as a company, employ yourself, and develop alliances with others from day one?

Who is doing this? Who is making sure their youngsters go on to independent careers after an apprenticeship with some one else?

“Open CV” and Friending at Work

Day One at Xoozya (cont’d)

Choosing an avatar to show my noobe status

The HR person was as good as her word.  My first task was to choose an avatar.  I thought for moment that I should choose carefully.

Then I realized that I had been so focused on finding out what the company wanted from me, I hadn’t been thinking about what I brought to the company and I couldn’t express my identity quickly.  So in the interests of time, I picked randomly.  I’m going to change the avatar later anyway.

It was a good choice.  When we looked at the ‘dashboard’ I would use, all the ten basic avatars have ‘noobe’ under each.  Good, so everyone knows I am a noobe.

Breakfast was good and very welcome as I had a long commute and had left home early to allow for delays.  Real coffee, fruit, fresh croissant.  And it goes down on the tab too.  So no need to fuss with cash or card.

Dashboard

After breakfast, we had a look at the standard dashboard that is at the heart of Xoozya’s communication system.

My avatar was already up, waiting for me.  So was my full name.  What I needed to do was choose a screen name, which I could also change later, and choose a strong password.  And the HR Advisor thoughtfully provided a little A6 ring bound notebook for me to keep notes.

The main tabs on the dashboard are similar to Facebook.  Home page which had a heap of stuff already on it, email, and profile.  And three more tabs: blog, CV, status.

Blog, I know – and there was a basic post saying “Hello, World”. Status was obvious at at glance.  It said April 1: Noobe Day 1.

CV was unexpected.  The CV I had used when I applied for the job was loaded up.  At the top of the page were links to my Linkedin Profile, Xing Profile, external blog, Facebook page with links for 30 external sources in all.

Down the right hand side was something more unexpected.   Nope, not adverts, but lists for “friend requests”.

Each request look like a tweet starting like @ceo Saw you facilitated a corporate strategy 10 years ago.  Can you make a note to tell me about it next time you see me?

There were dozens of these.  People all over the company had been going through my CV before I arrived!

What’s more, when I followed the tweet, I went through to their dasboard and their CV.

It seems I had 378 hits on my dashboard before I started work and people spent a total of 85 hours checking me out – and that’s before they followed the links outside.

Well that’s a heap of messages to answer.

And with that the HR body, put a flask of coffee, a clean A4 pad and a pencil pen on the desk and left with a few words of advice.  “Look around until I come back to find you for lunch at noon and maybe delay replying to anyone till you have a picture of who is who and what is what.”

Open CV and Friending People at Work

1   Would you like it if people knew you were coming and had looked through your CV carefully before you arrived?

2   Would you like it if people had sent you tweet-like messages pointing out which aspects of your previous work are interesting to them?

3  Do you like the idea of looking freely at other people’s CV’s (including the CEO’s)?

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