Thursday, February 11th, 2010

Job Hunt: Reality TV for Job Seekers

Move over Project Runway and Top Chef…A new reality TV series called Job Hunt has hit the air waves. Hosted by Women for Hire CEO Tory Johnson, the show profiles job seekers in New York City and offers advice on everything from how to improve your resume to how to spiffy up your interview wardrobe. The half hour show airs each Tuesday at 9pm on NYC Life (Time Warner/Fios/Direct TV/ Comcast – Channel 25, Cablevision – Channel 22). But if you don’t get that channel or can’t watch it live, you can view shows on demand after they air at the Job Hunt website.

What I like about the show is that it exposes the faces behind the unemployed and reminds us that each “statistic” is actually a person. Everyone can relate to the struggles of the job seekers but at the same time draw hope and inspiration from their messages. Viewers get to see where job seekers are making mistakes in their search strategy and the show’s experts offer advice on how to optimize your job search time.

The other reason I really like this show is that it makes me proud to be a New Yorker. The first episode profiled SIBL (The Science and Business Library) which in my opinion is one of the best resources for job seekers in all of New York City. SIBL offers access to several proprietary company databases including Vault and Wet Feet, classes to teach patrons how to use the databases,  job search coaching sessions from career professionals,  job search clubs, advice from retired executives on how to start a small business, and workshops on various job search related topics…all for free. The show, launched by New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg,  is just one example of what the mayor is trying to do to help New Yorkers find employment. Under his leadership the city also launched CareerLinkNYC to provide job seekers with additional online resources.

No one gets a modeling contract or a feature piece in Food & Wine Magazine on this show. But some of the job seekers profiled do get jobs and in my book that’s perhaps the sweetest victory or all.