Today, my colleague Phyllis Mufson invited me to participate in “Kindness Day.” Via her blog, she suggests perpetrating kindness via Twitter by doing and tweeting acts of kindness, using the hashtag (search tag) #Kindness.
Writing about job search and interacting regularly with job seekers, I thought it made sense to also contribute a brief blog with tips about how to be kind to job seekers. It’s very easy to make half-hearted offers to help someone in the midst of a job search. Everyone has made one of these offers in one way or another: “Let me know what I can do to help.” Or, “I’m happy to help, just let me know what you need.”
It’s easy to say, but unlikely to encourage the job seeker to follow through. We all know it’s difficult to ask for help — job seekers are no more likely to follow up with your offer than someone with a broken leg you tell to “let me know what I can do.” We’re all self-sufficient and don’t like to accept assistance.
What’s a better suggestion, in honor of Celebrating Kindness Day? Just do something nice! Here are some suggestions that came to mind.
- Invite a job seeking friend to meet for coffee with a contact who might be able to help him or her connect with a company of interest.
- Ask the job seeker what companies interest him or her. Review your own network; if there is a good contact, invite both to meet for lunch and facilitate an in-person introduction.
- If you’re attending an event that could be useful for your job seeking friend, invite him or her to go with you and make a point facilitate targeted introductions.
- If you’re a close friend, offer to do something nice personally — offer to babysit, so the job seeker can have some time alone – for job hunting activities or just to relax.
- Keep an eye out for useful information that could assist the job seeker, and pass it along. If you hear of well-suited opportunities, offer to forward a resume and actually make an effort to connect the job seeker with the opportunity.
- Peruse your own social networks — your LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook connections — for possible good contacts for the job seeker. Do everything you can to facilitate their connection.
- Keep an eye open via your own networks about resources such as Hiring for Hope/Job Angels — where volunteers offer to assist job seekers.
What other ideas do you have? What have you done to help a job seeker? If you ARE a job seeker, what’s the best thing someone could do for you? Also share tips of what is NOT kind — or not helpful — for job seekers.
Thanks to this group of Twitter users for co-hosting Celebrating #Kindness Day! Be sure to follow them and tweet some kindness today with the #Kindness hashtag!
Kim Wells @kwells2416 http://Twitter.com/kwells2416
Susan Smith @togetherwf http://Twitter.com/togetherwf
Dave Carpenter @Dave_Carpenter http://Twitter.com/Dave_Carpenter
Sarah Hodsdon @Sarahndipitous http://Twitter.com/Sarahndipitous
Georgia Feiste @feistycoach http://Twitter.com/feistycoach
Jacob Share @jacobshare http://Twitter.com/jacobshare
Melissa Cooley @TheJobQuest http://Twitter.com/TheJobQuest
Phyllis Mufson @PhyllisMufson http://twitter.com/phyllismufson
photo by the_moment