Wednesday, June 06, 2007

My Bio 3.0

I finally found time to create a new bio for my LinkedIn profile. I was sick of writing my bio in the standard chronological format so I took a bit of a different approach. Let me know what you think...

My Bio 3.0

Current Gig: Recruiting Programs Manager, adidas North America
Mission: Build a world-class talent acquisition program
Years: Less than 1 year

If you threw some adidas originals on Doc Holiday, asked him to give up dentistry and take on recruiting and took his pistol from him and gave him the internet then you have the role of talent acquisition in the 21st Century.

Doc Holiday ventured into the wild frontiers and to survive he needed to understand the landscape he was in, had to have strong relationships, a reputation or a brand and then an ability to act on it. This made him a legend. Equally important for doc was the incredible stories that generated out of his Wild West days that have transcended cultures and times.

Talent acquisition is the wild west of the 21st Century. Think about it. You have the internet which is really like the gold rush days. Everybody is out there looking for their plot on the internet with the desire to build something great. Everybody is racing for this. You are either a bystander or you are in the game. Doc was in the game. Then you have the villains. These are all of those competitors out there looking at how they can build it better, faster, smarter. You have the struggle of staying in a top position; the landscape is constantly changing and information flows from every direction. You have to get smart about what’s relevant and what is not. This also happened during the gold rush days. Reports were coming in from all over but choosing which direction was critical. With limited supplies, harsh conditions and hostile territories you couldn’t afford to be wrong. And if you play all your cards right you make it through the struggle, defeat the villains and make your indelible mark in digital history. Welcome to my frontier—the Wild Digital West.

At adidas I am tasked with building a world class talent acquisition function, a kicking talent brand, Web 2.0 recruitment strategy and whatever and wherever else the twists, turns, clicks and crashes of the Wild Digital West takes me. The thing that Doc did not have was a pair of kick’n adidas originals which I personally believe are a necessity in the Wild Digital West.

Yes, I know, this is an odd bio but I’m not sure how else to explain what talent acquisition strategists do. We go where the wagon trail ends…or shall I say we go where the fiber optics start to fray!

Prior to adidas I spent almost seven years at Waggener Edstrom Worldwide. Waggener Edstrom is a global PR agency focused on innovation with clients such as Microsoft, AMD, T-Mobile, GE Healthcare and Amazon.

My role at Waggener Edstrom was to develop and implement integrated strategies to attract key talent. I served as a digital “trend spotter” for the agency’s staffing function as well as played a key role in advancing our talent relationship capabilities with CRM and Web 2.0/social networking strategies. Prior to this I lead recruiting for the Microsoft PR team. Over the six and a half years at Waggener Edstrom I have recruited for just about every business unit within North America as well as spent a small stint of time recruiting for our UK team.

I spent the first two years of my career on the agency side. The volume and intensity of agency recruitment laid the foundation for where I am today.

The Wild Digital West isn’t always a friendly place or easy to navigate but it’s a whole new frontier to explore. Maybe it’s the last great one in our lifetime. To embrace it you must accept it for what it is. As the Doc said in Tombstone, “There is no normal life, there's just life, ya live it.”

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