Tag Archives: jobs

Years of Gigs, Diligently Recounted

Surrey (1975~1985)

  • Decorative candle maker and sales assistant (with my Mom)
  • Editor of Pig Express news
  • Columbian newspaper delivery
  • Surrey Leader newspaper delivery
  • Real Estate Weekly newspaper delivery
  • Associate Editor VOM fanzine

Utah Valley (1985 ~ 1988)

  • Pizza Feast – pizza making guy
    Pizza Beast – ibid
  • Supplement factory worker (Provo) – a string of super lame temp worker jobs, this one repacked cheap tea from Taiwan into fancy boxes and sold them as a miracle cure
  • Software packaging assembly line – another temp job packaging word perfect software
  • Phone surveyor for political and commercial interests (a rite of passage for all renegades in the area, worst job ever… but i had my revenge…)
  • Night librarian (Utah Valley Community college) possibly best job ever

Burnaby (1989)

  • Bicycle repairman and assembler (Sharpey’s Burnaby)

SLC (1990)

  • Land surveyor assistant
  • Cinematic newspaper distributor (Cinema in your face)
  • Word perfect class teacher (Univ. of Utah)

On the road (1991~~?)

  • Term paper writer
  • Grilled cheese maker
  • Beer seller
  • LSD merchant
  • Cannabis distributor
  • Car delivery driver

Logan (1992)

  • Bicycle repairman and assembler (Sunrise)

Europa (1992)

  • Rock band roadie (slacker)
  • Grape picker (Germany)
  • Chestnut gatherer and seller (Germany)

Japan (1993-4)

  • Mushroom farmhand (Saji, Tottori Japan)
  • Rice harvester
  • hitchhiking hippie poet/diplomat
  • “Flower stick” juggling stick maker and seller
  • Hemp bag maker and seller

Guam (1994-96)

  • Japanese Beach club host (Star Sand)
  • Bi-lingual tour narrator on submarine tour boat (SS Neptune) Gave tour in Japanese and Korean
  • High School teacher educating about Japanese and english in Guam JFK HS

Olympia (1996-2005)

  • Writer (essays for High Times, Cannabis Culture, Journal of Int Hemp Assoc, Menu etc)
  • Hemp bag designer and marketer (hempenware)
  • Film producer and marketer (hempenroad)
  • Maker of websites, Teacher of Internets (Internet adventures)
  • Marketing and business development guy for Olywa >ATG > Zhonka,

Vancouver (2006-2013)

Writer (articles in Heads, and many other outlets) Also podcaster of note

New school marketing communications community media maker and sharer at:

  • Elastic Path – mktg coord
  • Happyfrog – strategic advisor
  • Raincity Studios – community evangelist
  • Movieset – director community
  • HootSuite – marketing director > VP Community

NOTE: Loads of public speaking and community project ringleading in this era

Victoria (2013~)

  • Disabled poet and scrapbook maker

Get in the Nest: Tips for Applying to HootSuite

The post Get in the Nest: Tips for Applying to HootSuite appeared first on Hootsuite Social Media Management in March 2013. As of Sept. 2017, I no longer work for Hootsuite (retired) and this article is simply saved here for posterity and as a writing sample. Do not ask me questions nor assume this is valid advice whatsoever. 

With ongoing excitement about working at HootSuite (especially in light of the Best Place to Work in BC win), I’m often asked for referrals, recommendations, advice, and informational coffee chats about how to get interviewed – and hopefully hired – at HootSuite.Dave-O

These tips are simply from my experience, having helped hire dozens of employees and recommending many more. While some of these points are specific to HootSuite, most will apply to anyone seeking a job either in social tech or using social media to find a new gig.

 Tip 1: Get to Know Us

There’s lots of news about HootSuite in the media, and you might know a few things about our products, but it’s in your best interest to really get to know us as a company.

Start by following @HootHR and @HootClub and read the recent news about HootSuite. I recommend looking at culture pieces, videos, and anything featuring our HR department. Basically, find everything you can get your hands on so you know who we really are. Your most important resource is the HootSource blog – dig in and start reading.

Be especially thorough about learning about the department to which you are applying. Whichever it is, make sure you take your time to see if it’s really the right fit for your skills. When/if you come onboard, you’re going to immediately be working on ongoing projects and you’ll want to add something to the table straightaway.

For example: If you hope to  work for Solutions Partners department, learn everything you can about our existing Partner Programs: who they’re for, what’s included, what are the targets, who is successfully onboard, etc.

Owl Applicant Tip 2: Be Thorough to Get In

Make sure you read all the requirements of the job postings carefully and don’t let anything slip past you. We wouldn’t want some minor detail to derail you from coming on and being a valuable contributor at HootSuite. Double check. Triple check and adjust your cover letter and resume so that they are an exact fit for the job you seek.

Also, prep your references and include them right from the beginning. We will contact these people, so choose carefully – peer co-workers, college party buddies, and bosses from 8 years ago are poor choices. People to whom you directly reported or collaborated are great, as are professional mentors.

Tip 3: Tell Your Story, Creatively

Many people have applied with fantastically creative resumes and we really enjoy receiving these treats – In fact my office is filled with a little museum of great resume applications – but make sure the creativity is backed up with information about your skills and how you can help HootSuite grow.

One favorite was a personalized, home-made, tea-bag set. Each tiny paper tag had a small owl on one side, and quotes from some of my speeches on the back. It proved the candidate had done her research, ergo: she watched videos to get to know my department and how she might be able to help us with what we do. In the tea box, she listed her different skills and experiences from her resume –  only instead of a sheet of paper, she chartered it out in mini infographics and bite-size pieces. She included illustrations of her in a HootSuite T-Shirt, along with an owl magnet-clip and a handwritten note. It is a real treasure and even ended up on the news a few times.

Other notable applications include: a USB key loaded with a resume and supporting materials hidden inside a HootSuite logo made out of LEGO; a longboard/skateboard painted with a HootSuite Owl flying across the deck; a video blog in which the candidate uploaded a daily video explaining the various reasons why she would be great for HootSuite. Plus she conducted an entire social media campaign to promote the series which was a great way to demonstrate her communication skills.

cake resume

So while all kinds of unique ideas can help you stand out, make sure that you’re using creativity to back up your professional story. The video series is a really good example of a creative application because the candidate was able to show how she can present herself while at the same time conducting a multi-faceted campaign.

Ultimately, while we *want* you to be creative, we really *need* to hear your professional backstory.

Tip 4: Tidy Up Online

It’s really important to us that you have a thorough LinkedIn profile. Be sure to include links to other online presences, too.

We’re a very social and online company so I’d say that your LinkedIn profile is more important to us than your traditional resume. Add links to things that you’ve done online, communities that you’ve contributed to, code you’ve written, successes you’ve generated for a company, media articles, and your blog. These kinds of things are super valuable so be sure to include them in your application.

In other words, if we see that you just signed up for Twitter yesterday or you’re using a competing tool, it’s probably not a good sign ;) Ditto if your LinkedIn profile isn’t up to date or well taken care of  – that’s going to be a big “X.”

Tip 5: Get Into the System

You’ll give us all kinds of ways to make yourself known later on, but first you need to get into the system. The delightful Human Resource team use a web-based tool called The Resumator, which lives at: HootSuite.com/Careers. Check it out, and see how you can use that tool to wow us.

If you don’t see a job that looks exactly right for you, apply under “I’m Awesome, Hire Me.” But be sure to make a great case for yourself. This is where everything will start. We want to see your super power, and how you’ll add value to the HootSuite brand.

Keep in mind that all the jobs posted aren’t the only ones that will ever exist, so come back often. Also, our HR team is particularly good at matching up people’s skills with an unexpected  department or job. They know the needs and personalities and culture of each team so trust them to help you find a fit.

Tip 6: Patience and Time are your Allies

HootSuite receives hundreds of emails and resumes per week and the HR team fields loads of inquiries from many different channels. We put a lot of resources into finding the right fit for each role, and the process takes time. Be patient, and know that we are going over your dossier with careful attention. Sometimes it takes time for the right role to pop up. If we think you’re great but not a good fit for the role, know that we will keep you on our radar for when we find just the right spot. Remember: we want awesome folks like you.

It is worth noting that some of our highest performing employees interviewed with several different departments before finding the right fit and coming onboard.

We think we’re worth the wait so don’t give up on us and use the time while you’re waiting to learn more about the company and your potential within.

And no, please don’t ever call to ask about the status of your application.

Dave O and HootSuite Community TeamDave O and the HootSuite Community team

Tip 7: Know The HootStory

If you’re a successful candidate, you’re going to come into an incredible company that’s on a remarkable journey.

Take the time to get to know the backstory of where we came from, not just as a business, but the way that we evolved our role in the social media world. What I mean by this is to look at some of the stories we found ourselves included in, i.e.: our role in the Egyptian revolution, the Japanese earthquake and Tsunami relief efforts, and our role in major political campaigns. Of course we’re a neutral party in all of this but it’s very powerful to understand the change and the power that our tool has effectuated around the world.

Tip 8: Enjoy the Possibilities

Most importantly: Once you get a job and pass probation, you’re in, you’re one of us forever. We’re a unique company, we work hard, and manage to have a lot of fun so remember these tips so you don’t miss out on a great opportunity.

Now that you’re ready, head on over to HootSuite.com/Careers and let us know about you.

 

Proud to be a British Columbian – My BC Jobs Plan Story

I was recently asked to share a personal profile piece withe BC Jobs’ Hide Ozawa, who is coincidentally also the goalkeeper for the SFU Clan Men’s Soccer Team, about my role at HootSuite, a leader in British Columbia’s tech space. For the record, while I attempt to gingerly avoid political posturing, I am a proud BC resident and thought my story was worth sharing. Read Meet Dave Olson for my full profile.

Meanwhile, here’s an excerpt that I found particularly interesting:

Image
Photo by Kris Krug

“Prior to joining HootSuite as one of the company’s first ten employees in 2010, Dave’s curious personality led him into dozens of industries in various countries all over the world. “During my twenties I bounced around continents and held around 100 (very) odd jobs. I was a grape picker in Germany and mushroom farmer in Japan. It was during a stint as a private beach host on the island of Guam when I discovered this thing called the Internet,” he says.”

BC Jobs Plan also recently featured profiles on two of my good friends and their success stories in the province. Meet Kris Krug and Meet Rebecca Bolwitt here.

Back in December of 2010, I was also highlighted as This Week’s Featured Vancouverite: Dave Thorvald Olson on Vancouver Tourism’s Inside Vancouver blog

Same bus, different stop – Trading Kits for Railtown

“The key to a perfect ending is knowing when to roll the credits” Drive By Truckers #

geared for traveling
Keep it light enough to travel

My ukulele-playing pal in Guam would always begin his humourous anecdotes on the boat with “so there i was … ” In this case, my story begins thusly, “so there i was, recording a podcast along the banks of Rice Lake, reflecting on the past year and figuring out my next move – i walked home and then the craziest thing happened in the form of an email from Mexico.”  (here’s the podcast: Festive Greetings to Ice Fishermen – Choogle On #82).

Of all the things i mentioned in the podcast, the note of “staying at one job for the year” struck me as funny. Yup, here we were a year ago New Year, New Gig ~ Moving closer to Self-Actualization in Kitsilano with the media chiming in and high-fives around. And, like a diligent dude, I gave er a full-on effort and left with a list of checked off accomplishment longer than i woulda predicted.

But, in short, i knew i was under-utilizing my passions and wanted to be a little part of something a little more in tune with my love of helping artists and entrepreneurs learn how to grow audience and share their work. In many ways, i’ve moved around dot-coms seeking something as mighty and fun as my first big internety success in Olympia WA ~ Yup, best is working hard with respected friends while providing a service which help all sorts of people fulfil the ambitions – like selling tools to the miners rather than ice to Inuit.

Changing Movies

smart cut bench

Without unneeded details, the ensuing weeks were a whirlwind of giving notice to my gig in Kits, finishing up several big projects, hopping the train to the secret village, paying respects to departed brewer Dick Young and Pe Ell ringleader Lee Roy, interviewing rock n roll younglings Numbskulz and surviving a bus ride back up.

Then i added a maraschino cherry to my professional sundae by publishing the Social Promotion for Movies guide (go ahead and download) and presented to a group of producers (slides) before turning in my laptop and walking out onto the Granville St. evening ~ aflutter with festive bunting.

The next morning, I hopped on the same bus as usual but hopped off a different stop to begin spreading the gospel of the owl as Community Wrangler for HootSuite – a social media dashboard + professional twitter tool which I’ve used since early release and evangelized far and wide to interns, friends and clients.

Kitsilano Flashbacks

I will miss lunchtime walks in Kits and taking a seat in the community gardens along the track – i also worked with a sterling cast of characters at various times in a transitory environment. But I won’t miss trying to change an industry which is resistant (and even hostile) to the web as a communication, distribution and promotion medium.

vancouver skyline

A few highlights for your perusal:

Showing up

I introduced myself to the world at the new gig and laid out my big ideas with: HootSuite adds Owls – I’m DaveO, Community Wrangler and the kind accolades via Twitter, FB, comments and every other channel was truly mighty and a real treat to be honest. {thanks to each of you}

I’d kept the news quiet and tipped off Rob Lewis at TechVibes broke the “news” {thanks} in Dave Olson joins HootSuite as Community Director:

One week after announcing that they raised $1.9 Million from VCs and Angels, HootSuite is putting that money to work and have hired Dave Olson as their new Community Director.

Olson will be responsible for overseeing marketing, outreach, and support for HootSute and already has a number of educational and aspirational campaigns planned to evangelize the social media dashboard to content makers.

Olson was an early user of the initial Bright Kit tool and has actively used HootSuite for promoting his own projects – so this appears to be a perfect fit on both sides.

Up in until very recently, Olson was with Vancouver startup MovieSet – he wrapped up his duties there just last night after presenting a white paper called Social Promotion for Movies to the Canadian Film and TV Producers BC branch.

Olson made some noteworthy improvements at MovieSet during his time there and will no doubt continue overachieving in 2010 with HootSuite.

New Year, New Gig ~ Moving closer to Self-Actualization in Kitsilano, 2009

Field with drying rice in Gonda
Field with drying rice in Gonda village, Nagano, Japan by Uncleweed

Moving jobs across English Bay

While i keep hearing that staying with one company results in a “career” with more vacations, raises and professional reputation, i’ve never worried much about my resume but rather try to focus on personal results and most importantly, moving closer to self-actualization.

With this in mind, effective immediately, I’ve moved on from Raincity Studios and joined Movieset.com to help jumpstart their mission of connecting moviefans with moviemakers from the office in Kitsilano.

Thanks for snacks and smarts

I’ll truly miss each of my Raincity Studios comrades – we went through some massive projects together under tight timelines, and curious circumstances. To each of you, sincerely thank you.

Each one of the Raincity Studios crew at times soothed my mental health, weary soul, and achey body in this rather treacherous year. Your kind words, wise counsel, sweet snack, or a coffee break (with the magical Dane at Workspaces’ absurdly perfect beverages) will never be forgotten. I am smarter for working with each of you and happier knowing each of you. To get to work each day with your best pals is something everyone should get to do.

Truly thanks to each of Robert, Kris, Mark, Erik, Francis, Roland, Richard, Audrey, Hubert, Steve, Smith, Katherine, and especially Mariska, plus Niall, Nicky, Boris, Djun, Corinn, Ansleigh, and colleagues in China and South Africa.

I’ll still be around working on the Olympic Indie/Alt/Social media centre plan and stopping by to goof around and trying to distract you from your important work. I am very proud with the work accomplished at RCS including winning the Best of 604’s best company blog award, writing most all marketing copy and messaging for Bryght.com and RaincityStudios.com, producing long form blog essays about net neutrality, copyright reform, and heaps of events, and using social web to inform social justice concerns as evidenced in my finals projects – the Phones for Fearless City campaign and a forthcoming Drupal case study about Homeless Nation.

Sampling Vancouver’s finest

ferg

Since moving to my now beloved North Vancouver in Oct. 2005, I’ve assisted a handful of Vancouver’s finest companies in raising their profile, refining messaging, effectuating social media campaigns and magnifying internal culture. At Elastic Path, happyfrog.ca, 3rd Whale and Raincity Studios, I’ve learned much about ecommerce, eco-entrepreneurship, and web community building while riffing with diverse teams to create remarkable projects.

At Movieset.com, I’ll help filmmakers reach out to filmfans using social media tools. As a movie enthusiast and a filmmaker (Hempenroad, 1997), i think i can bring a lot to the table. And I’ll have a chance to work closely with Michael Fergusson who i first met when i interviewed him for a Raincity Radio podcast (thanks Megan Cole). He showed up wearing a vintage Vancouver Millionaires sweater and talked about poetry so I knew we had something in common.

Digital Samurai for hire

On the go with Nordic skiisMaybe it’s my love of Kurosawa films like the Seven Samurai and/or my feeling of being the reincarnation of writer/explorer Lafcadio Hearn (who lived in Shimane, Japan in the early days of modern western cultural exchange 1870-1910-ish), or sailor/diplomat William Adams (who was the first Brit to make it there in early 1600s and became an advisor to shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu), but sometimes i feel like a digital samurai. No not a stealthy fighter, but a hired hand, loyal until i move on to another fortress to defend, quest to fulfill, or princess to save (or is that Donkey Kong?).

Like the earnest Samurai who left money matters to the merchant class (another story for another time), I’m not in it for just the money and I have a sense of intrepid loyalty which drives my daily life … and I deftly handle a big sword (or laptop in this case).

Changing my bus route (again)

So, again I’ve changed my Translink bus route – this time from Upper Lynn Valley to Kitsilano – which will provide even more time to think about the neighbourhoods in the Vancouver gray.

So, a year later, I am in Michaels’ office. I am wearing slippers, there are several dogs wandering about, a green screen room down the hall, and a nice lady just brought me coffee. Anyone who knows me realizes i thrive on change and new input from words, scenes and smells – so there you go, another life remix.

Don’t worry, i am still here and available for beverages and conversation. See me at Wordcamp Whistler, Northern Voice among other funtimes.

##

change my route to think about the neighbourhoods

March 30, 2007

i change my route
from time to time
to think about
the neighbourhoods

switched Cambie 15
for Main Number 3
or Fraser if i don’t mind
cutting across Kingsway

skirted schoolgirls Xavier-bound
headphones, sweaters
in rows

downtown exchanges
spake in broken halts
sometime gleaming
often rain
occasionally sleet, hail or ice