At a lengthy job interview today (a few hours long), the discussion took a turn which provoked me to show something from my blog. As I was bringing it up, the interviewer (sitting next me; informal setting) said something along the lines of “Oh right, you’re the guy with the blog where you wrote about how you hate Maccabi Tel-Aviv, right?”
I am (see link, of course) and acknowledged. This was met with a humorous response (he literally stuck his hand out proudly and said “just for that, you’re hired”), but I was very surprised he had read my blog (which is on my resume), and I said so.
“Oh, of course,” he said. “I read your blog, your Facebook account,” he made bunny ears, “your LinkedIn account…”
I was speechless. I guess this was just me being naive, but I was shocked somebody would go out of their way enough to read up on a person prior to an interview. This is an expected level of professional thoroughness before interviewing someone, but my standards had been set low after countless silly phone interviews with head-hunters who repeatedly ask me questions I had explicitly answered on quite succinct resume. (“So where did you go to school…?”) And this guy had put in his two cents of reading my blog.
I still think people worrying about their Facebook pics deterring potential employees are overrated, at least in Israel and certainly in the high-tech industry. No self-respecting employer would bar an employee over a few drunken pictures on Facebook (hey, we’ve all been there). Still, it was interesting to see that in what seems to me to be the very unstructured process of hiring, some due diligence is being given, at least by some people, some of the time.