At Lifehack.org last week, I took another swipe at job descriptions, something that is crowning my hit list of sacred cows these days.
We are in a time where the traditional ways we look at job structure is absolutely begging for reinvention; as workforce demographics surely shift, businesses everywhere are bracing for inevitable labor shortages. The thing is, just bracing for them doesn’t cut it. Chances are most of the job descriptions you are using are hopelessly out of date, and they don’t begin to paint an accurate picture of the job vacancies you should be filling.
Don’t get overwhelmed: this is not something you have to turn into a major project. You can tackle your fresh reinvention one job at a time whenever you have the need to fill a vacancy. Get rid of the one-for-one replacement mentality, and consistently reshape and reinvent instead.
Came across this shoutout for a summer intern at Seth Godin’s blog today, and this is all you need in a job description — plain talk, with the overall theme of take this job and run with it – dazzle me.
Why don’t we do more of this?
1. need someone in our office a few days a week. work from home some days is okay. hours pretty flexible.
2. office on the hudson river, 45 minutes from Grand Central in NYC. we pay transportation.
3. report to editor-in-chief. sample projects: new feature testing, pick shortlists for lens of the day selection, make prototypes for partners, research passionate communities, jump up and down in forums, day-to-day maintenance of the site, learn new hula hoop tricks, research lensmaking trends…
4. you can basically set your own role depending on how hard you work and what you’re good at
5. number five is up to you.
6. we have an espresso machine, but no ponies.
5.25.06 Update: Look at this job description in the archives, from October 2004:
…a Q&A called 60 Seconds with Mira Nair, director of Vanity Fair.
“FC: What is your job description?
Nair: My work as a director is to make everybody bloom: to cast for strengths of an actor, mine the strengths, and then maximize them. Casting actors is both intuitive and informed. Then I see what will work and encourage them in the direction of what’s working. I love them into it. They’re like sponges: The more attention you give, the more they shine.”