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How to Use Quora in Your Career Transition Process

March 23, 2011 by Careerminds

 

This is the third post in our Social Media Series which will cover the do’s and don’ts and in’s and out’s of various social media platforms. As a job seeker we hope this will help you optimize your search. For career coaches, we hope that these resources are helpful as you work with your clients.

 

I am not at all surprised that Quora is one of the newest social media platforms gaining popularity. It was becoming apparent that many Facebook and Twitter users were using their tweets and statuses as a way to ask questions of their friends and followers.

“Anyone willing to review my resume?”

“Anyone know how to create a shortlink?”

“Anyone know how to use WordPress?”

Questions such as these ones come up all the time, and social media surely provides a quicker way of getting them answered than making phone calls or asking around face-to-face. However, responses often are dependent on the knowledge of your network – your friends or followers. Which often isn’t enough.

 

Quora describes its self in the following way:

Quora is a continually improving collection of questions and answers created, edited, and     organized by everyone who uses it.”

It is essentially a question and answer site.

How is Quora Different?

A common question when first being informed about Quora is: How is it different than Yahoo! Answers or Linkedin Questions? Twitter? Facebook?

There are three major attributes that differentiate it from other social media platforms:

1.       Simplicity: This is all Quora does. It focuses solely on asking and answering questions, making it easy to use and clear in its purpose.

2.       Community: Individuals intentionally sign up for topics that they are interested in or are knowledgeable about,  allowing  for a greater wealth of knowledge.

3.       Anti-Self-Promotion: This site is very much against self-promotion. You can identify yourself and your title when you answer questions, which could in turn promote your name and increase visibility, but beyond that there is no so self-promotion. Leaving behind a URL to your website or your twitter handle is inappropriate within this platform. The upside is that individuals and companies are not answering questions simply to get their name out there. The answers are coming from individuals who feel they know the answer and are paying it forward after having their own questions answered.

 

What does this mean for you as a job seeker?

You can follow topics related to job search, search for answers to questions you have, and ask questions that no one has posted yet.

Here is a list of steps and resources to get you started using Quora in your job search:

1.       Sign up for Quora and build a profile: Before you can start using it, you’ll need to create an account. Click here for assistance. (http://www.quora.com/How-do-I-get-started-using-Quora)

2.       Follow topics related to your job search: Follow the industry you are interested in, career related topics, and anything else related to your potential employment and job search process.

3.       Look for answers: Use the search function at the top and start typing in your question. Before you even finish it will generate a list of possibilities that you can choose from. This is helpful in terms of narrowing your question down and getting better, more specific answers.

4.       Ask a question: If you type in your question looking answers and a list isn’t automatically generated, then no one has asked that question yet.

 

Additional Tips:

  • Click here for a great resource that explains how to get the best answers to your questions.
  • When first signing up for a Quora account, you are prompted to select interests to “ follow” – this allows you to keep track of content that you are interested in. Luckily, if you do not want to take the time to select everything you are interested in initially, you can just pick a few and then move on. Click here for a resource for how to go back later on and follow additional topics.

 

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Careerminds provides scalable, strategic solutions to organizations seeking affordable, web-based outplacement services. Using a Web 2.0 e-learning platform that delivers affordable, online career transition services, Careerminds provides a high-tech and high-touch blend of on-demand career transition education supported by senior-level career consultants to help displaced workers reenter the workforce quickly.

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