This first roundup of reader questions and answers covers job interviewer bias, social media profiles, confidential job searches and resume complexities.
Is this a new thing?
From time to time, I'll post roundups of job search questions and answers that JobMobbers are asking me. This is the first such Q&A roundup.
I've tried to keep the questions and answers as close as possible to the actual conversation but in some cases I've changed things to protect the reader's identity or I've given a longer answer than what was possible at the time due to the fact that Twitter – where many of these questions are coming from – only allows 140 characters per message.
As a candidate, what if you sense the interviewer is less qualified than you and as a result might be biased in hiring you?
Be more concerned about the interviewer not being able to recognize your value to the company. For a successful result regardless of the interviewer's qualifications, you need to sense what the interviewer is hoping to hear and answer in kind.
Personal blogs and social media profiles
Is it a good idea to include my blog and facebook profile in job interviews? If so, how to do it?
Include anything that will grow your value in the eyes of the hiring company. You want them bending over backwards to hire you and that's only going to happen if they think you'll bring tremendous value. If your blogging is relevant to your career and the job you're applying for, you should mention it on your resume and refer to it when answering questions in your job interview. Do the same with your Facebook profile.
If your blogging and Facebook activities are completely personal and unrelated to your work life, only mention them when asked about them directly. However, if you specifically don't want your future employer to know about them, take a look at the 170+ Resources and Tips To Help Manage Your Reputation Online to anticipate what your employer can discover about you and then decide how to react in advance.
Confidential job searches
I'm currently in a job that I'm desperate to leave; how would you recommend I look for jobs while currently employed?
This topic was covered in-depth on JobMob in Reader Question: Search For A Job Without Losing My Current Job?
In short, make sure you're really willing to take the risks of a confidential job search and know how to handle the consequences. Keep in mind that if your confidential job search is successful, you will need to tell your current employer about it and reassure them that you didn't job search on company time.
While working for Company X, it was closed down and the owner retained existing contracts and us workers with them. As a result, we continued working on the contracts as his employees although sometimes in different roles. How do I show this on my resume?
Split the job descriptions.
Using your official job title there, have one job description for your role at company X before it closed down.
Have a second job description for your role when working directly for the ex-owner of Company X. For company name, write the name used on your pay slips. For the job title- find out what the owner would respond when asked by a recruiter about your role, and put that title on your resume. If it doesn't match with your daily activities or your work achievements (e.g. because the owner still sees your role as it was for Company X) then add “and” or a slash, followed by the job title that most accurately describes what you did for the owner.