Monthly Archives: November 2006

Google Gracious Me! Part 2

So Google has come up trumps again.  I got into work this morning to find an email, from me.  Actually not quite from me, but from as near as me as you get without actually being me.  Erm.. I’m confusing myself now.  I got an email from Sarah Hayman – the Sarah Hayman who lives in Australia and writes about hospitality and tourism (and beats me in the Google rankings).  She informs me however that she was actually writing about training information and has moved on from that these days.

She typed her name, my name, our name, into Google and up popped Wedlog!

Most bizarre seeing my own name in my inbox.  I wonder if a flurry of Sarah Haymans will contact me now? 

The Sarah Hayman Society – current membership – 2.

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Work Life Balance For All

I was interested to read this articlein The First Post demanding that work life balance be seen as a right for all, and not just for working mothers.  As PR is an industry dominated by women, it has become increasingly important to employers to find a way to accomodate working mothers and bring skills back to the workforce after the baby is born.  Lots of PR agencies (and to some extent in-house too) have cottoned on to the fact that allowing part time working, job shares and flexible hours means that mums that really do want to come back to work, can.  Just because they choose to have children, does not mean they can’t add value to their clients.

When we head hunt candidates here at Indigo Red we ask them what they would change about their current position to make it the perfect job.  Perhaps surprisingly, the answer isn’t always "money" and increasingly the response is "I want a better work life balance".  Flexible working and part time opportunities are increasingly more appealing to everyone, not just working mothers, and at the more senior end it seems these wishes can be accomodated.

I currently work from home one day a week, which means on that day I don’t have an hour and a half commute each way and essentially get three extra hours to do with what I wish – even if it is the laundry!  On the days I am in the office in Watford, I work from 7.30am – 4.30pm and hence miss most of the heavy commuter traffic.  After 4.30 I still have my Crackberry so there’s no danger that clients or candidates (or my boss) can’t get hold of me.  I have no children, but these flexible working arrangements were extremely appealing to me and I can’t deny that they were part of the reason I took this job.

As trends change in both recruitment and employment, it is essential that employers are as flexible as possible with their working arrangements.  Those that offer flexiblilty will find employees who know they are on to a good thing and will encourage loyalty and brand praising from within. 

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Google gracious me!

The power of the blog has hit me with full force this evening.  How many of us have Googled our name to see where we come in the rankings?  Usually, I’m down there on page 1, 278,792.  However, Philip Young mentioned on Friday how, if you type his (reasonably) common name into Google he tops the charts.  I typed mine in tonight and find I’m listed fourth, out of 1,179,000 – only beaten by a Sarah Hayman who writes about Australian tourism and hospitality and a Sarah Hayman who is a nordic skier.

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EuroBlog 07

I feel I must mention EuroBlog 07 as it’s close to Philip Young’s heart.  If you are a PR professional, get involved!  As one of the speakers at Delivering the New PR he enthused about how social media is changing the PR landscape, and has some interesting thoughts on how PR professionals should be monitoring what is being said online as well as in the more traditional media.

We are quaking Philip, we are quaking.

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Why we’re quaking about Second Life

I don’t want to bang on about this, but I’ve had my boss on the phone this afternoon congratulating me on making my first tentative steps into blogging and Second Life reared its ugly head again.  Apparently, he’s been investigating the virtual world and happened to bump into Neville Hobson on his travels.

Neville was one of the speakers at Delivering the New PR on Friday, causing much discussion around Second Life and the launch of his virtual business crayon.  While some of the delegates questioned WHY anyone would want to spend real money on a pair of virtual jeans, others it seems (my boss included) are intrigued to know how it could benefit them – particularly in business.

As head hunters, we spend much of our lives in hotel lobbies and coffee shops trying to remain as anonymous as possible and interviewing potential candidates.  In Second Life, anonymity is assured and a virtual coffee is possible at the click of a button. 

I do question though whether chemistry is something you can measure when not meeting someone face to face.  When a CEO says to me "so tell me, what’s X like as a person" I don’t think I’m going to be able to say "well his avatar is pretty funky" and still be taken seriously.

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Get a (Second) Life?

To continue with my musings on Delivering the New PR – I was introduced to Second Life yesterday.  I had heard vague rumblings about it before, my boss Steve Mallison-Jones had mentioned it in passing but my head nearly exploded when he tried to explain it so it was with interest that the experts at the conference talked about it being the next big thing and how all 16-24 year olds are going to be living in Second Life and we should get with the programme.

Now, I’m fairly tech savvy.  I use forums, email, Google, and eBay.  I even plan my wedding online and share photos on Photobucket and now I have a blog.  But I am struggling with the concept of  Second Life.

Correct me if I’m wrong (and I invariably am) but it sounds to me like Sims with a bit of cash changing hands, and a rather scary loss of grip on reality.  Sims (I’ve been told by my husband to be) is a girls game, and yet Second Life is so far a predominately male pursuit. 

I am  missing the point, quite obviously. 

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In the beginning

So I’ve gone and done it now, I’ve joined the 60 million or so people with a blog and have joined the social media revolution.

I went to Sunderland University’s “Delivering The New PR” conference yesterday and was inspired to start my own blog.  So you can thank Tom Murphy and Stuart Bruce for my ramblings.

Three things dominate my life at the moment.  As a head hunter recruitment has to be up there at the top (my boss will read this so lip service is required).  Secondly PR is up there, as it is our niche industry to recruit in and what happens in PR impacts daily on our work.  Thirdly it’s my wedding.  I used to be an independant, strong minded, practical, down to earth soul with a mortgage, cat, car and a secret penchant for chick lit – then on the 16th of May this year I became the proud owner of a sparkly diamond ring, a wedding planning book and the complete inability to walk past any bridal shop.  I’m not quite bridezilla, but it’s a not a long walk down that road.

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Filed under Careers, Personal, PR, Recruitment