I am a huge believer in everything happens for a reason.
On August 15th, while in the midst of my relocation from Calgary to Vancouver, I received an email from a colleague. One of my peers from my past employer, Shawn, had forwarded me a casting call for a HR/Recruitment Reality Show.
All he added to the email was: “Should I send your application in?”
I re-read the email to Michelle and we both started laughing. A HR reality show? For real? I think that we were both imagining Big Brother meets The Bachelor meets the Apprentice. Regardless, I was intrigued.
I sent an email off to the Producer of the show asking if “America” meant North America or the United States of the America. I assumed it was the latter, but I had nothing to lose!
On August 24th, Chris Lavoie from Top Recruiter and I finally connected. We had some sort of interview, get to know me chit chat — of which Chris dedicated a lot of time to finding out who I am as a person. What drives Jillian Walker? I went off about the usual… working in HR, changing the world, being over-involved, traveling, volunteering and working with young women. I’m positive I talked his ear off and that he was overwhelmed.
At the end of the call, he tells me that I’ve passed and that I need to do make an audition video. The only problem though? I had 24 hours to get it uploaded to Vimeo. Ay. I hung up the phone and went into action mode.
Yes, this meant I tweeted out to the masses:
It was funny that this competition hit a week after I moved away from the city I lived for the last 7 years. If I had been in Calgary when this happened, I would have had a network to help me out! Instead… Chris gave me a challenge. Not only did I need to great an audition video in 24 hours, I now needed to find someone to help film it.
I had checked out some of the videos on the competition website (www.toprecruiter.tv) and I was less than impressed. You can seriously make a great home video with a flip cam and a friend. Really, I’ve done it too many times to count. You can! I didn’t want to be one of those people who were holding a camera in front of their face looking ridiculously silly and unprofessional.
Thankfully social media came to the rescue. A few hours passed and I had a ton of local Vancouverites offering to help, BUT I also had a production company step forward and offer to produce and edit the video. Kevin Sarasom from redmuse and I talked over Facebook chat throughout the night. We talked about the requirements of the show, plus how I would add a creativity and necessary edge to my audition. We agreed to meet at the Corner of Davie + Denman the next day to do the filming.
I wasn’t at all hesitant to meet up with Kevin. What’s the worst that could happen? He would attack me with a video camera in a ridiculously busy place like English Bay? We did quick exchanges of hello and got on the move. After all, we had a 8pm EST deadline! It took us 2 hour to film a 90 second shot. Seems ridiculous. We were both considered that we wouldn’t have enough content when we went to edit, so we totally filmed 10 mins too long of content. Oopsie. At the end of the day, we had some brilliant lines and I was happy with what we created. We sat in Starbucks for the afternoon. While Kevin edited, I worked. I continually peeked over curious as to the final product.
Finally it was uploaded to the site and an email was sent off to the Producer for review. My fingers were crossed.
I heard from the show a few days later and apparently the casting crew was pleased. They uploaded my video onto their website and instructed me to gain momentum! I’ve been around the block when it comes to this sort of competition or challenge. I knew exactly what I needed to do… I needed to build a fan base.
Ta da! This is my audition video, check it out:
I have officially been branded as “The HR Rebel.” They could have used words like insane, intense, crazy, nutjob… instead they used ‘rebel’. I like it. It sounds somewhat sexy. Perhaps it’ll even help my dating life. Don’t tall, dark and handsomes like industry rebels? ;)
So is this ‘Top Employer’ all over again?
I have no doubt that you remember KPMG’s “What Makes a Top Employer?” How can you forget it? The process was pure torture — daily votes, daily harassment for just about 6 weeks. Then we waited a month for results. Then we waited 4 months for my prize. But do you remember how much momentum we created in Canada? A ton! We… not me, WE had a voice. We had an opportunity to challenge the way employers evaluated their practices and integrate a Gen Y opinion into their leadership teams.
I don’t really look at this competition as much different. Yes, the topic is different and the demographic is different. At the end of the day, this competition is about education. It will provide an opportunity for the community to learn a lot about recruiting and the HR profession (likely – the good and the bad). It will give leaders and employers fresh perspective on hiring and retaining talent. If I am included in the competition, Canada will have a voice.
So how do we make this happen?
The show has challenged me to gain momentum. I know that I am so close to making it on the show [they are making their final decision on the 5 people in late fall]. You watched my video. You know that I know all about fit. I’ve already determined that this show fits what I’m about. Now it’s in TopRecruiter.tv’s court to find out if I’m the right fit.
I would love if you watched the video ONCE. I need you to check out the website ONCE.
[I promise. Only ONCE.].
They are tricky people over at TopRecruiter.tv though. They have left a whole pile of rating systems within the audition page. So if we’re going to cover all our bases, here is what you need to do:
- Head over to:
and if you haven’t already, watch the video.
- Give my audition a score between 0 and 10. Click on the star to make the rating. Seriously, give me what you think I deserve!
- Give my audition a thumbs up or thumbs down. Click on the icon to make the rating. [Please note, if you give me a thumbs down, you should unsubscribe from my blog]. ;)
- Leave a comment. It’s really not that painful, you only need to put your name and email in — there is no need to register! Please note that all comments are held for moderation by the show. No need to use offensive language or be blatantly mean. ;)
- While leaving a comment, check out the other comments. Under every single comment, there is an opportunity to give a score between 0 to 5, and also give a thumbs up or thumbs down rating. I have been learning a lot about myself from the comments that have been left on the page and who knows, you might learn something too!
- If you are on social media, I’d love a share on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn. I even have share buttons right at the bottom of this post — how convenient eh? ;) For Twitter peeps, you can use the hashtag #TopRecruiter. If you’re on Google+… cool. But I’m not. So do whatever you do over there to give me some love!
- Now… give yourself a pat on the back for supporting a HR keener in her quest to change the world. You could also treat yourself to a latte, mani/pedi, bubble bath… whatever floats your boat. :)
The video has been on the TopRecruiter.tv site for just over a week and I haven’t really mentioned it via email or social media. I wanted to be able to share the story of how this came to be and why I want to be part of it. The video has been randomly landing in people’s laps… of which I get an email and someone says “Is that you?” “How do I vote?” “How come you haven’t said anything yet?” Today was the day to formally announce.
To everyone that has voted and supported so far, thank you, thank you, thank you. The comments that you have been leaving on the site and sending to my email warm my freakin’ heart. Can’t someone send some hate mail? All this lovely is going to go to my head!
A huge thank you to Shawn and Dawn for always looking out for me and being inspirational HR role models.
And lastly a thank you to the clients of Elevated HR for supporting the audition and also how Michelle and I do HR differently.
I have seen the momentum that we can generate. I know it exists. So let’s create it. ❤