Or how a certain Mark Z. envies meDear scapegoats, the articles I share on Linkedin, reveal it all. The social media representative for serious professionals is no more a posh version of “look at my picture perfect Facebook/Instagram life.” Want some proof? Just compare the number of views for the various articles I post on Linkedin.
The Dutch health care system, compared to the US,i is something nobody cares about, the link generated just 16 hits in two months. Remember, I worked for several years in health care finance and am connected to quite a few people from back then.ii
On the other hand, everybody seems to love the post about collecting football playing cards – and that story is in Dutch. So much for a global workforce. Perhaps it’s more my age than my professional friends, but people can’t seem to get enough of the story about how Panini, the Italian manufacturer of collectible cards withers the football 2018 championship, without Gli Azzurri (the Blue Ones), pretty well.
Me, I liked the article because it tells the story of a business that flourishes despite the odds. Guess I’m an old-school finance dinosaur. Cutting costs is easy but maintaining – or even better – growing sales, that’s what’s it all about. Besides if you cut cost when business is bad, all you are doing is help sink the Titanic faster.
From the day I joined, I disliked the hype that goes with anything people post on Linkedin. We all have these Aha moments. I call ‘m “look at me, the world’s greatest showman.” A favourite classic is a former co-worker who stated she was skilled in accounting. The lady worked as a controller. Despite that the words debit meant look to the left (door). By design credit was synonymous with look to the right (window). No surprise here, but she struggled with both terms. Does it mean she was bad at her job? No, she was respected by management for digging deeper and getting the real story. Accounting just wasn’t for her.
If you cannot relate to the above, have a little fun and browse your connections. While you do that, count the number of people who claim leadership skills, creative or forward looking. I can hear your growl: “if he ever becomes a leader, we’ll go bankrupt within 24 hours.” Hey, there is a reason I write this on a sunny Saturday afternoon. We all recharge our batteries during the weekend and no better way than to have a good laugh.
So my advice is, don’t take Linkedin too seriously. You need it to prove you’ve actually worked in all those magical places you’ve listed in your bio. Other than that be smart about where you apply your bragging rights.
i The Dutch DBC classicification closely follows the ICD grouping for diseases.
ii If health care finance sounds boring, think again. Averaging about ten percent of GDP globally, it literally is big business. If you like a challenge – which 99 percent of Linkedin profiles say they do – the ever changing landscape of health care finance might be just your cup of tea. Want even more of a challenge? How about retroactive legislation that leaves you scrambling for the door.
The complexity of health care finance is ill understood. When I applied for a job at the investment arm of a major Dutch bank, my future boss knew all about it. It’s one reason he hired me over other candidates.
To the credit of my co-workers, I loved it. We were a dedicated team. Everybody was prepared to go the extra mile. We had a great time, so good in fact, that ten years after we all left, we still see each other once or twice a year for dinner and drinks. Now that I think of it, it’s time to send out another invite.