What if the box had said “Shut-up Mark” when the cornflakes started talking to him? There would be no JobAngels. Or to be more precise, there would be no #JobAngels. And that would be too bad for @digitalbart, who’s looking for web design work, or @Cooper108 who was laid off from the LA Times, or the dozens (probably hundreds by now) of others who have been tweeting in 140 letters their need for a job.
It was only two weeks ago that Mark Stelzner was eating breakfast and got to thinking about the gloomy job news. A long-time recruiting executive who now runs his own HR management consultancy, and, curiously, moonlights as a voice actor, Stelzner recalls wondering what would happen if each of his contacts could help just one person find a job.
With 700 followers on Twitter, a large percentage of them recruiters, he sent this message: “Was thinking that if each of us helped just one person find a job, we could start making a dent in unemployment. You game?”
Game they were. Today, 14 days after that January 29th tweet, Stelzner has a movement on his hand.
There were 1,400 followers and 1,000+ messages to JobAngels Wednesday afternoon. Stelzner personal following has doubled. The movement, and that is what it is, has spread to Facebook and LinkedIn, where the messages are reposted and many others originate.
“I love that recruiters are embracing this tool,” Stelzner told us, marveling at just how viral the idea became.
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Now a website is being launched to pull things together in one location.
Not only do they offer jobs, but a cadre of Guardian Angels help run the Twitter operation, reviewing the Tweets that come in and then reTweeting (reposting) them to #JobAngels. (The hash mark means something special on Twitter.) When you consider the multiple networks of followers who repost the messages, the reach is remarkable.
Though its Twitter archive is replete with jobs wanted and jobs offered (the latter outnumbering the former), Stelzner’s vision for JobAngels is to encourage people to “help those around them. I’m getting a lot of notes from people that it’s a reminder that people near to them need help.”
On his blog he writes, “I am blown away by everyday people deciding to step up and aid those in need of employment. This is a chance to truly impact someone’s life and it is amazing to watch the goodwill grow at a time when it’s tempting to thrust your head in the sand.”
So while his JobAngels with jobs are reaching out to those who Tweet about their need for work, Stelzner says the message is “Embrace one person.”