Juan Merodio: “We live in a very complicated moment, where it is important to be positive”


6.2027 millions of unemployed people, and an unemployment rate of 27.16%. According to last data published on April by the National Statistics Institute (INE), unemployment in Spain continues to rise, and find a job is becoming a real challenge. 

In this scenario, Social Media cover a fundamental role: more and more companies search for the online presence of their candidates, and take care of your online personal branding is a must to be hired. But how to use these new tools in the most useful way? Several books cover this subject, one of the last is Trabajar con Red by Juan Merodio.

Juan, 33 years old, is a Spanish blogger, and one of the main expert in Digital Marketing and Social Networks. Winner of several awards, including the award for the Best Idea of the Year 2006 by Actualidad Económica and the prize Young Social Entrepreneurs by the Universidad Europea of Madrid, he always cultivated the passion for writing. Author of several books about Marketing 2.0, he inaugurated 2013 with this new book, where he explains how to deal with the new situation in the labor market, and provides useful tips to succeed.

“Current situation, known by all,” this is the title of the first chapter of the book. It’s true, we all know how difficult is nowadays to find a job, and is also difficult to be optimistic. But in your book you talk about the importance of what you define as Internal Positivism.

We live in a very complicated moment, where it is important to be positive. In the end, you transmit everything, and if you start with a negative mindset, you will automatically put yourself in a negative situation, in which will be more difficult for you to succeed. We always need to look ahead, see the glass half full, be optimistic, and get to work to find what we are looking for. These measures I explain in the book are medium to long term ones, but they are certainly going to help people.

What do you think is the greatest challenge for people who get to search a job through social networks?

Today, the main difficulty is the saturation. When a company publishes a job offer, suddenly there are 600 people registered, so each user becomes almost invisible. But this difficulty can be overcome with the help of social tools. For example, I think in the use of the video resume, which here in Spain is seldom used, but it is a way to differentiate yourself. In the end, the best option is to try to differentiate yourself among all candidates, and a video curriculum is something anyone can do with a webcam or a mobile phone, transmitting to the recruiter a different original view of yourself.

So, differentiate yourself with creativity.

Right. Find creativity. For example the case of the video resume with Vine: the person who did it, she stand out from the others. This is the basis to success: creatively use the new tools we have to stand out.

Many people associate social networks with the loss of privacy. What do you think?

I think everyone decides what he wants or does not want to share. Social networks allow you to manage your privacy, deciding who you want to see your content and who is not, what information can be accessed and what not, etc. I think the problem is more not to manage the privacy, because the tools allow you to do that. At professional level, you have to know that everything you put may influence your search for a job, so you should be careful. Anyway, if you do not want to be on any social network there is no problem, no one forces you to do so.

But it is true that it is ever more important to have an online presence and visibility.

Actually, it is still beginning. But I believe that things must be done before they start, you have to go ahead. This is a trend that will grow up in the coming years, more and more companies are going to assess people’s online personal brands . So you have to start work on it, and the sooner you start the sooner you can get results.

In your book you focus on four specific tools: blogs, Linkedin, Facebook, and Twitter. What are their different uses to find job?

Linkedin is the leading social network to find job: there you have to be, with a very complete profile , and trying to be active in it. Facebook is an interesting social network but not essential in order to find job. Twitter is more and more useful because there are many companies that are turning to this social network, publishing job vacancies, and obviously if you aren’t there you could lose opportunities.

The way to seek employment is changing, and social networks are for you the “present”. In your opinion, what could be the future?

It is very difficult to know or guess how this situation will change, also because of the speed with which nowadays everything changes. But I have pretty clear that we’re going to have all these tools more and more social: I do not care if they will be FB, Twitter or Linkedin, or new one. Things are going to be more connected with internet, and there will be more info available network about each of us, both personally and professionally. So, I think it is absolutely important to know how to work with these tools, and how to manage our digital reputation and identity. All the small footprints we leave online everyday give people a first impression about us; we have to make sure this first impression to be as real as possible.