Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A Professional Challenge

Whatever you call what you do – PR, advertising, marketing, corporate communications, social media, interactive, design – really doesn’t matter right now. What does matter is that your profession is under assault.

In your typical cyclical downturn, people get put on the street. Often companies use this as an opportunity to cut fat, weed out the undesirables, unload those who are qualified but just playing out of position. After a predictable (give or take) interim, most of these folks find a situation that’s better aligned with their talents, interests and abilities.

This is not your typical downturn.

This downturn is not cyclical and many good women and men are on the street through no fault of their own. Many more probably will join them in the New Year. Sadly, a fair number will be “freelancing” or “consulting” for an uncomfortably long time.

This matters if you care about your profession. Good people leaving it doesn’t help anybody.

Here’s the challenge:

Yeah we all get requests for “informational interviews” and networking meetings and all that.

Take an extra one.

Pass along a lead.

Offer a new business idea.

Share a contact.

Share a lead.

Take a lunch.

Offer a word of encouragement.

Tell a contact that someone good is looking.

Refer a client you can’t take to somebody you respect.

Got more?

We’re all in this together.

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Jennifer McClure said...

Great advice! Thanks for being willing to help out those who need jobs, encouragement and networking contacts. My experience is that helping others without expecting anything in return actually does generate business opportunities. The giving cycle works!

Lally said...

JM: Thought for a minute before pulling the trigger because I AM NOT suggesting we all become recruiters. Not trying to put you out of a job or anything.

It's about enlightened self-interest. If there's a talent drain in the city, the region or discipline, it can take years for an industry or a profession to recover. If it ever does.