Don’t get us wrong, stalking isn’t ALWAYS the solution. But there’s no denying that knowledge is power; and if you’re angling for an in with a potential employer it might just be that a little extra preparation give you the edge. Serial web-botherer Carlo Pandian tells us more…
Finally, you’ve received the phone call; you’ve been invited to attend a job interview at an exciting, up-and-coming, attractively-staffed company. The chance to to get your dream job is getting closer and closer. What can be done in preparation? A lovely new tie? Strong anti-perspirant? A confident hand-shake? All vital, obviously. But if you’ve any chance of succeeding, you’ll need to know more about the company you are approaching and, in particular, your employer. Remember, the web can tell you everything.
Yes, the time has come to stalk the person you want a job from. In this interconnected world there’s never been freer access to professional – or even, slightly more frighteningly, personal – information about the people you want to untangle. You can learn all you like about the company you’re looking for a position in, but it doesn’t mean a thing if you don’t understand the gatekeepers. It’s time to use the internet to your advantage, and tailor your application experience to the company and people you want to impress.
1. Website Stalk
It’s safe to assume that the company you’re applying to has a website (if not, perhaps back away from the application in the first place) and this is a great source of information. Have a look around, identify their targeted customers, services offered and tone of voice. Normally you can see company employees in the following sections of a website: About Us, Contacts, Company profile, Company blog or Our Team. If this doesn’t turn up any results, you can find more information by typing the following queries into Google:
Site:[company-website.com] role of your interviewer
Site:[company-website.com] HR director
As soon you find the name of your potential interviewer and related information, you can google them, and begin more in-depth research.
This social network contains company profiles, where you can find out which employees are currently working at an organisation. Scroll down and identify your potential interviewer, look at their profiles and skills in order to assess and study what you would need to prepare before you get to the interview. Moreover, have a look at their second-degree connections, you may find that the friend of your old friend at high school knows the owner of the company! Why not reach out to him and ask him to put a good word in?
Other social media stalking
At this point you may have identified two or three possible interviewers. Be like Sherlock Holmes and look to see if they have spokenat any industry events recently, or what they share on Facebook and Twitter. To find their social profiles, just google their names together with the following keywords: Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, MySpace (maybe in the 90’s they had an account there), blog (they may write for some blogs) or news.
Are you ready?
You can seriously impress an employee when you can show him or her that you have done your homework on them; who doesn’t like to be flattered? Google is very helpful for anybody looking to find information about someone, and – for better or for worse – the lack of privacy on the web make this even easier. Just perhaps don’t go as far as rummaging through their dustbins though, that might not go down so well at interview. Very best of luck to you, and happy stalking!
By Carlo Pandian
Carlo Pandian is SEO account executive at Tug Search and Social Agency and actively stalks bloggers and editors during his working day. At the weekend, he loves gardening and visiting contemporary art exhibitions with his friends.