Sometimes I wonder if they’ll have to extend my local Barnes & Noble bookshop to accommodate the always-growing career self-help aisle. With so many books written by “experts,” and thousands of blogs devoted to making work better, I sit here this morning wondering if any of it has made a difference.
With more resources at our ready than ever before, are a greater number of people happier at work then lets say 10 years ago?
My Jobacle ego likes to think so, but how can we quantify the results? Unemployment numbers continue to trend towards double digits, hitting the highest rate in 16 years. Do any of these people feel better because they can commiserate with one another?
Authors have always had a bonafied credential. They can point to the fact that they were able to to get through a publisher’s filter. At that point, the writer has to know what they’re talking about, right?
My sneaking suspicion is that in the 21st century, that is less true than ever before. It seems as if ANYONE can be published. Whether it’s via an established publishing house (tier 1), a self-publishing entity (tier 2) or an eBook (tier 3), suddenly, everyone is a writer.
This means that job seekers and folks who are looking to improve their work life who are reading these books and blogs, must put is extra work to establish the source of the information.
Here at Jobacle I have always been up front about who I am; a regular middle manager in his early thirties who likes to share contrarian thoughts, views and advice on office work. I’m passionate about helping people ‘make work better,’ but that does not make me an expert.
Perhaps you already have your favorite career blogs and Web sites. During your travels, here are a few things to look for.
– What are they selling? It could be a site littered with ads or a paid product. Take a good look at what the author’s ‘motives’ are and what they potentially have to gain.
– What is their experience? You should ask yourself why you should care about what they have to day. If you do not come up with a good answer, you should move on.
Most of the major job boards that have blogs and books have an agenda too. If everyone was happy and satisfied at work, then no one would be looking for a job, and these SimplyHotMonsterBuilder sites would be no more. Think about it.
What’s my point? My point is that I want you to be careful. Don’t just accept career advice at face value – know your source.
Will Jobacle one day release a book or ‘sell’ a product? We’ve given a lot of thought, and have been approached from many different angles. It certainly remains a possibility. But you have my word that this blog and the Working Podcast will always deliver honesty and truth, putting the worker far ahead of everything else. Can the competition say the same?