EditorialsBy Matt Bud, Chairman, The FENG

I hope that none of you still believe in the Tooth Fairy or Santa Claus.

In much the same vein, I hope that all of you are smart enough to know that there is no job board with an exclusive list of job leads. And, anyone trying to sell you job leads should be viewed with suspicion. If you think my comments about the value of job boards available to you for a fee are harsh, my thinking about the free boards isn’t much better. While there may be job leads available on some board that you haven’t seen elsewhere, the real question to ask yourself and to ask your friends is do any of you know anyone who has gotten a job from one of these job boards?

Keeping in mind that someone does win the lottery every day, you will most likely find out the answer is no.

What is wrong with most job boards is that organizations are allowed to publish leads without identifying themselves. As in the old days of newspaper ads, all that you see is a P.O. Box number. There is no way to even know if the jobs actually exist.

While I make no claim that the postings you see in our newsletter are exclusive, one thing I will claim is that for the most part we are successful in forcing those posting to identify themselves. Search firms are required to publish their postings under their names, but are allowed to keep their clients’ names confidential. Corporations publishing postings in our newsletter are required to provide the name of an actual person at the firm who is taking responsibility. It is all part and parcel of making them feel responsible for the integrity of their information.

On our side, it is my expectation that members take responsibility for only responding when they are qualified. You know who they are, and they know who we are. Not so on the rest of the Internet. We represent a unique environment.

To ensure that you have a flow of job leads to consider, I ask that all members do their best to share leads they learn about with their fellow members. If it is not possible to share a lead in our national newsletter, I would ask you to at least share it with your “inner circle of friends” within The FENG. Job leads are a gift of friendship. They shouldn’t be sold.

Those of you who are spending money on job leads, I must ask if you are sending in contributions to support The FENG? Trust me, every dollar we raise in The FENG goes to support something I know works: networking, networking and MORE networking.

Several years ago we spent a tidy sum rebuilding the backend of our website to ensure that you can REALLY find a job. Our now not so new Member Directory Search feature is really slick. If you haven’t taken it for a test drive, don’t be bashful, try it tomorrow. (Honest, I won’t say anything about why you haven’t used it before.) And, that feature is only the beginning of the value you have as a member of The FENG.

For those of you smart enough to sign up for our Chapter or Special Interest Group meetings, we have an RSVP system that allows you to download a meeting attendance list before and after the meeting to facilitate your connecting with folks you want to meet and/or did meet at these events. You never have enough friends, and this is how you make them.

The third leg of our mission to connect you with other members is The FENG Forum. This bulletin board was built to provide a “Members in Need of Assistance” with feedback feature to our organization. Go out to the board anytime you sign in and set up a question for others to answer. Share your knowledge by answering questions others have raised.

Good jobs are always scarce. Therefore, the competition for published jobs has never been higher. Networking provides you with access to the so called “hidden job market.” Let me assure you, with 40,000+ members, someone in our organization knows about everything that is happening.

If you are an alumni member of The FENG, I would urge you to consider your fellow members for every “work opportunity” in your organization. The only folks who are really open to hiring individuals who are “well qualified” is someone like you who has had the “you’re over qualified” comment hurled at them when they were “seeking other opportunities.”

There has to be some work out there that needs to be done. If you need help finding a fellow member to do it, just send me an email.

Regards, Matt

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