When Communities Define Your Job Requirements

Involving community and customers in providing feedback about your products isn’t the only way to innovate your company. In the future, especially around public facing jobs at companies, we should expect brands to involve the community in defining what those roles should be.

If you’re following my tweets, you’ll remember me mentioning this open position of Sr Manager, Emerging Media Marketing a few days ago, and commenting how one of the preferred requirements of having 250 Twitter followers.  You can see all those that responded, retweeted, or commented back to me.

While recruiters have been using social media to seek and find potential candidates, it was interesting to speak to Joshua Kahn, who spoke at the Social Recruiting Summit at Google, who is an Accenture consultant embedded at Best Buy.  He’s now helping Barry Judge, Best Buy’s CMO, find this role.   From his blog (which by the way is a great example of an open CMO) Barry asks the community to help define the requirements for the role.   It’s suggested that members use the community idea site IdeaX (we call this an embracing strategy) to define and suggest what the role should entail, I found this submission, and commented on another.

Impacts of Communities Defining Jobs

  • Involving a community/customers to define what a role should be keeps brands focused not just on corporate objectives –but also to stay customer focused.
  • This is a trend towards 360 degrees of accountability for public facing roles, perhaps not just in new media positions but in any customer facing role, and perhaps eventually in executive positions. In some ways, this level of corporate accountability lead from transparency could ultimately help repair or prevent some of the downfall we’ve seen in our current economic climate.
  • Expect community not to just define what roles should look like, but to also recommend and suggest candidates that could fulfill these roles.
  • Although the feedback looks pretty minimal right now, if an excess amount of contributions appeared, expect hiring mangers to take portions of this input to be factored into the requirements gathering.
  • In the most radical future, we could expect a formalized rating system could appear that let customers and community rate and rank employees of any given company. We’re seeing early examples of executives are already being rated by their employees in GlassDoor.
  • Expect a 2.0 startup to appear that focuses just on community feedback for roles and job requirements, we’ve got them for everything else, so why not this?
  • The downsides? While the attention around this open req is unique, there’s going to be an equal amount of pressure in this role to succeed. Then again, this candidate is likely going to be familiar with the open –and public aspect—of the social web.

Update: Barry has posted that there’s issues with the IdeaX application, watch his blog for updates.  Here’s a list of all the submissions.