Forget hate speech and make Twitter a job search tool


Winnie Mitchel is a social media fanatic, but it is this very habit that led to the job she holds.

She is the managing director of Kenya Recruitment Consultants. She is accessible on Twitter throughout and responds quite fast to Tweets on her page.

Like Mitchel, there are numerous people who have landed jobs through Twitter, making it an avenue for success rather than a hate speech platform as many young Kenyans have turned it to be.

While social media platforms are created for casual conversations, they have been penetrated by professionals who use them for formal communication. Likewise, it is possible for a jobless youth to use social media to find a job.

“There is a ‘create list’ button, which allows you to make a public or private list of Twitter contacts that you can follow in separate ways,” advises Kris Kortaski, a journalist with the UN. He uses Twitter a lot, even for work.

A good approach, he advises, is to create one list for professional contacts, another for institutions that you are interested in, and a third one to follow only job listing accounts, such as Mitchel’s.

A list of workers and managers in businesses or organisations you are interested in will give you an idea about what type of people work in those organisations, and also what is going on. You will be able to tell these through their posts. You could also just ask.

For example, if you are looking to work in human rights, you could follow

This links you to a list of people you can tweet with or ask questions concerning the field.

A Twitter tool such as Tweetdeck is very helpful for monitoring lists in real time.

It is a better interface than the Twitter website because it lets you view lists of people chosen by you or by others alongside your main feed.

Twitter can be an effective part of your job search strategy, as some employers now also post job openings on their Twitter accounts. Twitter can further help you build a personal brand online.

So, after classifying your followers, put your elevator pitch in your biography, using a professional avatar and having a custom background that gives more details about your qualifications. Create a link to your online CV. Tools like Visual CV can help.

Establish yourself as an expert in your profession on Twitter by using your status update to tweet about topics in your industry. This is to help you generate an intellectual image. And so, please, use your real name.

Talking about how Twitter helped her, Mitchel says that the first time she twitted about her job interests, two people replied back in two minutes, and they were employees of a company that had some job avenues.

“Consultant companies also help make a base that can connect you with your best job. It is so simple. You just send them a tweet on your job specifications and they reply back,” she advises.

“My new favourite Twitter tool is Twellow. It’s on the list of programmes I use regularly to search people’s bios. It’s amazing,” she reveals. That should give you a hint.-Nation



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