Tis the season ... of returns. I'm speaking of this type: When what you gave didn't quite fit ... or failed to delight. When the electric s'moremaker someone surprised you with didn't exactly thrill. When the red-and-cream rep tie you opened was about the last thing you needed. Adding to the shopping frenzy that precedes a major gift-giving holiday is the near-equal craziness of long return lines, exchanges that are less-than-rewarding when all that remains are sizes XS and 3XL, and levels of patience that are anything but!
Wouldn't it be something if you could "exchange" a job-search experience (networked connection, coveted interview, key contact) with a talented but unknown-to-you fellow job seeker just as easily as you can return and swap that Belgian waffle maker (perfect for someone, just not you?).
My predictions for the new year include the following: There will be an explosion of electronically linked "solutions" for matching recruiters-and-candidates, hiring authorities with best-in-class talent, and even fellow networkers who'd like to exchange one good lead for another. I believe we've not even scratched the surface on the ways that the power of the Internet can be harnessed for more effective, more productive and, ultimately, more rewarding job search. I believe there will continue to unfold exciting new uses for blogs and methods of exchanging info that can help leverage searches in ways previously not tapped.
As you place your own personal postscript on 2006 and anticipate what is ahead for you professionally in the new year, I wish you the very best of success ... and many happy returns!