A few weeks ago I did an interview with Regine Heidorn. The programmer and information architect has an unusual acquisition strategy: she finds her jobs almost exclusively through social contacts and the Twitter network. She told me why this works better than expensive training courses and formal degrees, which you always have to show in Germany.

10 Strategy Tips for Job Search: Continuing Education or Twitter?

Experience counts more than testimonials

Regine Heidorn initially started several courses, but did not complete any. around in ITarea, she decided to do one Further Training at a private institute in Berlin, which she graduated with a school certificate. “At the time I thought I needed one Further Trainingin order to gain a professional foothold in the industry, ”reports Heidorn.

But the programmer soon realized that potential clients were primarily interested in references and experiences.

Expensive training worthless?

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The expensive training proved itself fast as worthless: “Some of the teaching material was outdated, the supervisors preferred to refer to tutorials in the Internet, to explain as exam-relevant content. Everything I can do today, I learned on my own,” she says.

However, Regine Heidorn recognized the value of a reliable Contact -Network at the Job Search has. And she discovered the social network Twitter, which allowed her to expand her contacts even further:

The customers know what you get!

“On Twitter, I can't just mean Competencies to prove, but also mine Personality bring in Think customers so they know in advance what to expect,” she explains the benefits of the 140-character service.

And they also benefit from Heidorn's network: "Because my colleagues always point out new developments or show me how something can be better solved, my network also guarantees a certain quality and timeliness of my work."

75 percent of jobs via Twitter

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For five years now, the Berliner has been active as @bitboutique on Twitter and online. She finds 75 percent of her jobs in direct exchange. An important part of your acquisition strategy: honesty. "If I can't do something, I say it and recommend the customer to someone from my network," says Heidorn, who is not afraid to take extreme positions in public discussions on Twitter.

Her customers, she says, appreciate exactly that: “Many are happy when I tell you exactly which programming services they need - and which not. And they trust me, precisely because I'm so critical and don't praise everything about the green clover! ”

Jobs before they know someone

Heidorn also uses other social networks such as Xing - but Twitter is her favorite tool: "With Xing I can only put my skills in a profile, via Twitter I can also communicate things like my hobbies or personal preferences - and it's so short and concise that people also read when they don't have much time”, the programmer makes the difference clear.

But this often results in unexpected job opportunities: Heidorn, for example, is a fan of geocaching, a kind of scavenger hunt with mobile devices. From this developed Idea a mobile excursion – and from it a teaching position at the University for Technology and Economy Berlin in Projects eVideo about mobile excursions.

It also works without completion

Heidorn admits: "I never thought that I could get teaching positions without a degree." From their experience that one also as a college dropout successfully may be, she has just founded the Association of Graduates, which is intended to make such careers visible.

However, she does not want to deny that on traditional ways Some things would be easier: “I don’t even apply to some job advertisements because, for example, I don’t have a degree. And: for sure there are also potential customers who prefer to see testimonials,” admits Regine Heidorn. However, she sees a major advantage in her acquisition strategy: "I have exactly the jobs and customers that match my skills and that suit me!"

10 Tips: Twitter or Training - what's the better strategy for you?

For many, Twitter is still unfamiliar territory for job hunting. But it can be more efficient than making expensive training. We explain how it works.

  1. In which industry do you want to work? If the branch or the company is rather conservative, you should choose the traditional way. However, if the company is open and perhaps even represented on Twitter, an attempt is worthwhile.
  2. Your strategy: First decide who you want to reach via Twitter and with which strategy you can build your own brand.
  3. Find information via Twitter: You can gather a lot of information about potential employers on Twitter, eg How open is the company, how do you deal with criticism, how do people think?
  4. Common interests: Look for people who have similar interests as you do. This leads to common discussions
  5. Looking for differences: But you are also looking specifically for people who tick differently than you - which gives you a lot of different information and controversial debates that interest others.
  6. How do potential employers tweet? Twitter helps you to get a feel for potential employers: how do they behave, which topics do they find exciting?
  7. Show who you are: Those who only consume are not perceived. Therefore, you must stay active all the time to get noticed - with interesting information, links or questions.
  8. Honesty wins: Twitter is about showing others who you are: so be honest and authentic, tweet something private - but please do not be too private!
  9. Do not blaspheme: Corporate gossip or anger over the former boss have lost nothing on Twitter.
  10. Take advantage of the short bio: Use the 140 characters in the short biography to note just about the most important thing about yourself and your job application so that anyone can read it. A link to the blog or Xing profile will help interested people to find more information about them.

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