Some people are naturally shy and retiring, which is not necessarily a good thing when it comes to securing employment in an economy that stubbornly refuses to come right. While more people compete for fewer jobs, it seems that indulging your ego and dabbling in some self-aggrandizement might not be such a bad idea. For example, there might be hundreds of bartenders applying for a position at a bar in a swanky five-star hotel, but how many Beverage Dissemination Officers do you think there are? A Beverage Dissemination Officer might not have any more skills than a bartender, but the gumption to inflate the title might be the gumption needed to get the job.
The IT industry is particularly competitive at the moment. Granted, it’s growing in leaps and bounds, but so is the number of people leaving school with some form of IT-related qualification. It’s become necessary to get creative when applying for jobs, and that’s just what some people have done by coming up with creative job titles that make them sound like IT gods. What’s interesting is that it seems employers have picked up on this titular-naming trend and have started advertising for people whose skills go beyond those of mere mortals.
Some of the titles put our Beverage Dissemination Officer very firmly in the shade.
Social Media Rockstar
It started as a fun nickname for the people who established themselves as prominent bloggers and powerful influencers in the slippery world of social media, but it didn’t take long before everyone was calling everyone else a social media rockstar in an effort to curry favour, and soon it became an industry cliché. Most people treated it as the honorary title it was, but there are always exceptions, aren’t there? According to an article on Huffington Post, at least one person officially titled himself a social media rockstar while working at a “new media” marketing company.
It appears that people working in digital media either have good senses of humour or grossly inflated egos because recruitment company Coburg Banks says that some interesting job titles that have appeared on CVs that come their way include: Digital Dynamo, New Media Guru, Conversation Architect, and Social Media Trailblazer.
According to Coburg Banks, at least one web design manager has elevated his status to ‘overlord’.
If you’re in web design, development, or programming and you want to make it slightly less obvious that you are overcompensating for other shortcomings in your life, you could always call yourself a Swiss Army Knife. According to HuffPost, the Matrix Group is in the habit of advertising for Swiss Army Knives, or web programmers who are experts at everything, even NERF weaponry.
By the way, Matrix Group CEO calls herself Chief Trouble Maker, so at least you know where the whimsy comes from.
IT Pro Evangelist
This one isn’t from applicants themselves, this one comes from an employer. Microsoft occasionally seeks IT Pro Evangelists for its IT Pro Evangelism Team. Not only do applicants need top-notch technical skills, especially cloud-related technical skills, but they also need to be brilliant at public presentations and adept at training, and they need to be ace data analysts, and should preferably have technical pre-sales experience. Try finding IT courses that give you all that and a bag of chips.
The job isn’t easy, but you could see the world and you know that the pay isn’t going to be half bad.
Apparently, Microsoft is also not above some whimsy as it employs a Director of Storytelling (the chap in charge of the Next at Microsoft blog), and has been known to advertise virtual security positions as Director of Intrusion Detection.
It’s worth noting that the IT industry isn’t the only one to indulge in some ego-pandering. According to an article on Forbes that was published way back in 2006, major companies started giving positions alternative titles not only to attract new recruits, but also to retain them. It appears that creative job titles perform a very practical function: they improve morale and make the positions more fun, which in turn makes staff reluctant to leave. After all, who wants to go back to being a receptionist after being a Director of First Impressions?
About the Author: Jemima Winslow is far too humble to consider herself an overlord, rockstar, or evangelist. Instead, you can simply call her the supreme high ruler of the written word, and make sure your head is lower than hers when you do so.