The Desk

January 5, 2011

Using Your Skills and Networks

Job search can be a real challenge. Sometimes it’s handled well and people seem to bounce back from a short-term setback with zeal in what appears to be no time. Others have a long detour and a lot of learned lessons that leave the apprentice not too well for the wear.

There’s talk that jobs in the Midwest are short on availability. Even though rents are much lower there than New York or Los Angeles, affordable housing is simply a pipe dream if you’re homeless or living on the streets.

Yet, today we have a story about a man who’s in the Midwest and homeless. It seems he’s in the right place at precisely the right time with just the right skills and definitely more than the required motivation. This man with the golden voice just got Opportunity buried into his lap thanks to his using his voice, the training he got in refining that skill, and the community on Reddit to advance his opportunities for housing and a career in the industry that he loves.

It was interesting that about the time that the golden-voiced Ted Williams story was going viral on YouTube late yesterday afternoon I was talking with a cab driver about those who are down on their luck but cheat or use shortcuts to pull themselves out of trouble. I observed that in those cases, the person will take on the traditional opportunity. Unfortunately, they scam the system by injuring their own self in order to gain short-term, not very profitable tools to gain income and relief. The self injury provides a stream for the short term (maybe three to six months), creates a Worker’s Comp record for them, and decreases their credibility. Ultimately, they keep finding themselves back in the same circumstances or maybe even worse. Meanwhile, their alternative paths to empowerment make those who are willing to provide a hand up or an open door become jaundiced and leery, thereby making them unwilling to repeat the generosity lest they be exploited again. Those who have genuine desires and goals, not to mention talent, are left to struggle against the stigma and prejudice.

Not so in the case of Williams. He’s using his intelligence to help him leverage himself and his talents to beat down the prejudices and stigma toward a person in his temporary circumstances and start his journey down the road to his personal success as he defines it. He’s availing himself of the assistance provided by his virtual network on Reddit to gain the reach he needs to market himself.

His story is so refreshing that it makes me wonder how many other real and virtual communities are actualizing these and other types of connections with referral opportunities for their members of whatever age or background.

Leave a Comment »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: