Want A Corporate Social Media Job? Demonstrate These Three Essential Qualities

Hiring managers, recruiters, and management staff are often confused on where they can find qualified social media professionals for corporate positions. They get a lot of resumes, but few are qualified and the rest are “wannabes”. In many cases, they have to employ the services of a recruiter to poach an experienced individual working at an agency or corporation, or post a paid listing on my job board (see right column).

I’ve reviewed quite a few job descriptions and talked to a few folks in the field, and can boil down the job reqs to three major skills, they are:

The Three Essential Qualities of Corporate Social Media Positions
There’s often a list of skills, backgrounds, education, and sometimes Twitter follower requirements listed but It boils down to three qualities:

1) Fulfill Meaningful Business Objectives
Here’s where companies are having problems finding qualified folks. The social media early adopter types tend not to be able to see beyond the shiny technologies and understand the business objectives. I can quickly find out who these folks are as they focus on the greatest latest tool. What’s a trick for landing a corporate job in social? Be able to have a 5 minute conversation with an executive about connecting with customers without ever mentioning twitter, facebook, or a blog. Secondly, these individuals will be able to use brand monitoring tools, have analytical abilities, and be able to benchmark their efforts that tie back to business metrics –not social media metrics.

2) Bridge Both Internal Stakeholders and Customers
This quality requires the professional to be able to relate to internal teams that may not understand the social culture, be empathetic, be able to communicate and train them, and be able to put it into action. Secondly, they often need to understand the culture of the community which they serve, communicate with them in a trusted manner, and engage in meaningful dialog.

3) Show Credibility With The Technology
The biggest struggle with hiring teams is that the demand and excitement for social and the recession has spurred a great number of social media experts and consultants. We already know that usage and experience don’t equate to social media expertise, yet hiring teams continue to look for credibility by the individuals current use with the tools. What they don’t tell you is this: are you capable of learning new technologies, evaluating, and then applying for business needs. Don’t misread this, it’s not in your favor if you were a late adopter, or don’t know the nuances of the technology, but it’s secondary to being able impact the company.

My hope is that boiling down these three essential qualities it’ll help both hiring managers and applicants be able to sort themselves out. But let’s open it up to you, are you a hiring manager or a candidate? What’s missing?

Update: David Armano shows what not to look for.