31 Jul 2023

Technical Influencers: Erik Boemanns Powerful Cybersecurity Discussion

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Technology Influencers Podcast: Erik Boemanns Cybersecurity

Erik Boemanns shares his view about cybersecurity and how to get a job in the field. It’s a great listen! He gives a huge amount of useful information.

This is part of the Conversations with Influencers series.

Interview Transcript Erik Boemanns

Richard Lowe  00:01

Good morning. Welcome to the cybersecurity excuse me, I’m gonna start that over. Good morning. Welcome to the technology influencers Podcast. I’m here with Eric, who’s a cybersecurity expert. And he’s going to talk about how to find and hold a job in cybersecurity. Eric, take it away. Thanks, Richard. Yeah, I appreciate you having me on here and looking forward to Congress, the conversation we’re going to have. And

Erik Boemanns  00:29

so a little bit of background on me just to give the audience some idea of why we’re talking about this at all right. I’ve been in it for more than 30 years from starting my own companies, to working for consulting, to working for companies directly and in the middle there decided to add a legal degree as a different path. And it didn’t turn out to be a legal career path, but it did turn out to be compliance and compliance leads to cybersecurity because PCI, HIPAA, all these different compliance standards, also have a cybersecurity component, right? Because are we protecting the data for a compliance reason? Yes. How are we protecting the data? What does it mean to have all those sorts of things become cybersecurity. And so the blending of those two together really did set me up for where I am today, which is that that blended role of technologist compliance in cybersecurity. And so I think that’s a little bit of a unique path to get there, and certainly not the one I would recommend unless you really want to go to law school. It’s not on the checklist of must dues for cybersecurity, but but it is something that can help you if that is your combination.

Richard Lowe  01:42

So

Erik Boemanns  01:44

I guess, Richard, we were talking a little bit in a previous conversation about how to get to a cybersecurity role. Right. So

Richard Lowe  01:56

that was my next question is we have a lot of our audience is beginners, they’re they they’re in school, or they’re changing careers, because of the various things going on in the economy. Cybersecurity looks like a good one to go to. There’s a lot of talk about it. So how would a person who has maybe taking done some certs or done a couple courses or wants to get started? Yep. Yeah, I think

Erik Boemanns  02:23

this is the answer that I think folks hate to say to none, but because it’s not that direct answer that everybody wants to hear. But it’s a little bit of it depends. And the reason it depends is, what is your background? What are those certs that you have? And then who do you know, what opportunities are available because everybody wants remote job, right? That’s, that’s a very popular thing, not all of security job, cybersecurity jobs are removed. And so a little bit of it’s going to be geographical. That’s just the nature of it. But also, and I’ve seen this, this conversation happening a lot on LinkedIn, and and other networks, the entry level positions are starting to get harder to get into, or they’re expecting you have experience for entry level, which is always confusing. And so how do you start to build any level of experience is having a certification is a good thing. It’s not necessary. Having a technical background is a good thing. It’s also not necessary, we have people going into security. Without they’ll have a computer science degree from several, I don’t have your science degree. And so how do you? How do you find that path? And I think it’s gonna be the thing that you’re gonna have to look at, from an individual perspective. And to kind of tune and tailor that. And so what I’m really mean, is, obviously apply for jobs. That’s, that’s the starting point. But what are the right jobs for the things that you want to grow into? So being an analyst in a security operations center at stock is a good entry level or junior level position. But there’s also a limitation on how many those those those rolls are. Another thing to think about is small and medium businesses are today struggling with cybersecurity, more than some of the events, some of the large enterprises, because the the risk is the same to them, but they can’t afford the security. They can’t afford their own sock, right. And they go into an outsource provider or what are they handling that? It can be something to think about is are there groups that you can work with if you have a couple of different skills, if you have a couple of different disciplines, maybe you’re pivoting from where your 80% Could be that and then that 20% could be helping them establish a better security posture security baseline, so that you are practicing those security skills in a real world environment with real risks that are happening and go from there.

Richard Lowe  05:06

Sounds good. So we you do a lot of networking on LinkedIn. And it seems to me that a prerequisite to that, of course, is having a pretty good LinkedIn profile that’s optimized, posting regularly commenting, connecting with the right people. How do you connect with the right people? Yeah, that’s a good question.

Erik Boemanns  05:29

That is a great question. And so I think it’s twofold. Especially if we’re talking on LinkedIn, right? You mentioned profile, posting, and commenting, right. So I’m going to say, take those first two and put them a little bit lower on your list. If you’re just focused on networking, you have to have them because you want to have some sort of, if I come back and look at your profile, some substance there, but kind of that first thing, or the effective thing, I guess, it’s a better way to say it, is find the people who are talking on LinkedIn, right, who are active, and are talking about the things that are of interest to you. So if you’re trying to get into cybersecurity, find the people that are out there that are talking about cybersecurity, there’s a bunch of us. So you won’t have any sort of spending on groups that they’re in fact that are they’re talking about it, and then start paying attention to what they’re writing, right, and how they’re going about cybersecurity. But more importantly, and you mentioned this, Richard, start commenting on their posts, start, start engaging them with a conversation in the public space, don’t just send them a direct message, because a lot of folks get so many of those that they really can’t look at them or turn through them. But what they do see is when you have something interesting to say, on their post, they do see that and that is something that they will pay attention to. And now username is associated with that thought and that comment. And so you can start to create that connection. So you know, there’s a lot of social events where you can build up a lot of connections. I’m not saying don’t do that, because that’s a great way to just broaden your network and find and find a lot of interesting people. But for the purpose of growing your cybersecurity, find the people who are talking about what you want to talk about. Also find the people who are in the industry, but maybe not as active, to follow them. Right, you can click the connect button, it’ll follow them, and they might get back to you. But if if you’re worried about your connection limits, and all those things, those restrictions, just put follow them, see what they’re talking about. And see if they are somebody that you want to engage with further, but then engage with clients. Circling back to your point about the profile, right, you still need to have that profile. Good. Because once you start engaging with them, they’re gonna see your tagline on that post. So if that tagline is not catchy and interesting, you’ve already kind of lost the first glance. And then of course, they do click through to see who you are, and what you’re about that profile is going to help kind of close that and say, I do want to reciprocate, I do want to connect button or the the follow back. So I think all of those are important, but to really be effective at the networking. It is the commenting side that will really connect you with people and help you actually get to know them get to know you. That makes

Richard Lowe  08:25

sense. Yes. And not only that, when you comment, I You should always follow up. So if somebody, right, somebody’s gonna comment on it saying, Well, this is stupid, or this is good, you have a point or whatever they say, you can follow up and say more about it. You can defend yourself, you can you can elaborate, and that starts a building that starts helping you find other people who are who are active who not necessarily posting because posting can be hard coming up with articles and things. But commenting is probably the easiest thing. One thing I want to point out is liking doesn’t do that much.

Erik Boemanns  08:59

Yeah, yeah. And then three people like it.

Richard Lowe  09:04

Yeah, it’s like big deal. And for the algorithm, it doesn’t do that much. But you when somebody posts you help them a lot, by commenting you actually help them. And yeah, yourself.

Erik Boemanns  09:14

Right? Yeah. So it’s a little bit of you, you’re scratching their back, right? And they can scratch your back? Because, yes, you are helping them be promoted on LinkedIn. But more importantly, you’re helping yourself be promoted because your comment is on their post in front of their network. I know Richard, you’ve got quite a follower base, right? And so if if somebody if you’ve posted something and I comment on it, that’s visible to my network it is it’s actually there’s a little light network, but it becomes visible to your network too. And so it’s like, twice or 10 times depending on on the person you’re coming on follower. So it’s a very, it’s quite cheap and easy way to get your name In front of a whole bunch of people, often right, I’ll see a great post, I’ll comment on it. And then the Congressman spawns off that. It’s kind of its own thing, its own little conversation that may relate back to the original post, but that may not. And so that power of connection is real and very much present. If you follow that approach.

Richard Lowe  10:22

The repost is also powerful, because it takes that that post and puts it in your feed, but with all of those comments and things on it, so that actually drags people over to your feed. So you really need to the good place to start is commenting. Yeah, and intelligent comments, you know, leave Don’t, don’t just put I acknowledged this or done, you know, good or something, put something useful there or don’t put anything at all. Because you want to be seen as somebody who is contributing to the group, not just somebody who’s clicking the button.

Erik Boemanns  10:55

Yeah, no, exactly. Sometimes there’s a great post, and then you want to say, great post. But it’s, it’s really not that helpful for you for the the original poster. So if it is a post, and it’s kind of cool, LinkedIn will actually prompt you. If you write if you click the like button, it’ll say, tell them why you like it. Or if you click the funny button, I guess the last reaction, he’ll say, tell them what do you find funny? That’s what you should do. Right? Your comment should tell the first poster, why you thought it’s a great post, not just great post exclamation point done. Even better, though, add your own thoughts to that said, if they’re talking about password security, and you’re like, you’re this is interesting, because I think I also know a password security. Obviously not quite an A. And that’s where it’s but then you’re actually building on the conversation as well. Yep,

Richard Lowe  11:51

yep. But you do want to use some caution. There’s some cautionary notes. Use use humor with caution. Different cultures have different value different things on humor, and humor doesn’t translate well over the internet. Right? Is one. Number two is, is try and keep it positive as you can, if it’s if it’s if you don’t have anything, my mom used to say, if you don’t have anything good to say, don’t say anything at all. And that holds Tripoli. True on LinkedIn, because those comments stick around. And sometimes they’re judged based just on what you’ve commented, and not on what you were commenting on. And you start becoming seen as a jerk. And you don’t want that.

Erik Boemanns  12:30

And I think that’s, you know, you see it over and over. If you’re on LinkedIn frequently enough, how positive a network how optimistic of a network LinkedIn is, compared to other social networks, which are both positive and negative, right, they’re kind of free for alls. Difference is because that’s your real name next to all those comments next to all those posts, it’s not just your Twitter handle of it may or may not have any way to tie back to you where you, you’re free to say what you want, or Reddit or wherever we see more. To your point, like the positive. The the other networks where you can be a little bit more anonymous, people do tend to go a little bit different. So again, hopefully that’s your line. If not, then we got different prompts to talk about. And so you’re being tied to that. Those words.

Richard Lowe  13:21

Exactly, exactly. something important about social media is it sticks around forever, as you probably know, from people who have been, had lost their jobs because of posts they made 10 years ago. Yeah, which is whatever you think of that is they made those posts, and now many, many years later, so you have to be kind of cautious to present yourself in a good light, we’d like to call it you brand yourself. Yeah. And you might actually talk a little bit about that. How do you brand yourself?

Erik Boemanns  13:53

That’s a great topic. There’s an obviously you’ll find tons of personal branding experts on LinkedIn who would love to talk to you about their approach? And if they resonate with you, then then absolutely, it’s a good thing to think about. But it’s what you want to be seen as what you want to be known for that your personal brand. The calling man just sent me an article recently about personal brand and, and marketing businesses. What personal brand is it’s marketing. It’s the message on when people see Richard name, they’re like, this is what Richard stands for when they see Eric saying, This is what Eric stands for. And so how do you be consistent in your posting, so that you’re not if you’re off brand, it’s obvious and why you’re off brand because every so often, I posted about something I cooked one day, right? That’s kind of off brand for me but it’s still on ran from who I am as a person. So I do talk a lot about cybersecurity, but I also talk a lot about careers and paths and how to get into cybersecurity. So it’s a In my case, I’ve got a dual edged brand. But that’s okay, because it’s consistent with itself, and even do my talk about what I cook for dinner. It’s true to me, it’s me. Authentic, right is the word that we like to use more talking about your personal brand. If you are not, as you promote yourself on LinkedIn, it may not be obvious at first, but it will become obvious to people who are following you or pay attention that something doesn’t seem right. Something like, how can this kind of person be through and also I see this type of commenting on the other feeds, right. And so that inconsistency that lack of Authenticity will catch up with you.

Richard Lowe  15:42

Yeah, it’s good to it’s good to mix in a few. Not too personal things. I mean, we don’t want to know all the personal details, but but like you say, what you what you cook for dinner, because you did it, you made it for yourself from scratch, and you were proud of it. That’s a that’s a cool thing or your vacation. A couple of notes about that. I see that occasionally. But we probably don’t need to know all the details of how you collapsed at your funeral or the heart attack you just had. Maybe that could be appropriate. But you But again, we also don’t want to know about the the invite you’re having at work, and how everybody’s evil in your current office or something. Avoid that kind of stuff. Gossip office gossip, right.

Erik Boemanns  16:26

Yeah. I think that’s your point, right? Because there’s there’s absolutely a fine line. And I am if there are people who are comfortable on LinkedIn talking about the kind of the hard parts of their life. They should, right. I don’t think there’s anything wrong. Like you said, if I talk about the heart attack you had, if there’s a reason for that message, maybe it’s awareness, maybe it’s just, you know, you want to make sure people know that you’re okay, right. I think that’s okay. Obviously, if you’re using it to paint faults and everything, that’s that’s a different problem, right? But yes, if you’re there to gossip about your work, if you’re there to talk bad about people or even company you’re at, remember, that company is watching. And so there’s there’s, there’s that really fine line of how do I be authentic? How do I be honest, but also not get fired for what I post on LinkedIn. Because if we’re not self employed, that is still the hypothetical risk that we’re all taking when we when we put ourselves out there. And it’s like, you, if you’re not at least aligned with your company’s kind of principles, as well. And those start diverging, you probably are going to hit some issues, but nothing. Again, maybe you’re ready for that if, and maybe more importantly, where I’m headed with this. It’s probably not a company that you should be working for long term anyway, right? If you’re, if you feel like bad mouthing, gossiping about it, or that it doesn’t align with your own goals. So not, this is not the quarter in the for people to be overly looking for new work, because a lot of people are laid off and looking but that as that shifts, right, think about that. If that company doesn’t support your brand, on LinkedIn, then you might have a different company in your future.

Richard Lowe  18:24

Yes, and that comes down to reputation management, those companies run, many companies run software that actually scans all social media, or at least the big ones, for things about them. And that’s called reputation management. And if you’re posting on Facebook, bad things about the company, you’re working for the company used to work for something, yeah, it’ll probably get picked up. And that you could get slammed by the company, and other people will see it. And if I’m a hiring manager, and I see you slamming your old company, I’m probably not going to hire you. Right? Because you’re talking bad about them. And I mean, if you don’t have anything good to say, don’t say it at all. And that’s, that’s a good rule to follow on the internet.

Erik Boemanns  19:07

It is. Yeah. And, and there’s definitely, I think that’s the safe roll. Right. And if you’re, especially if your goal is to grow and to to find new opportunities, is the best rule. I will say there’s people who are willing to stand for a cause and and that could be admirable. But I think they also have accepted the risk that that comes with write, of course, it’s a that’s a different if that’s you, if that’s your brand, go for it, but know that there’s a risk associated with it, because I don’t think that’s the same as bad mouthing, right, that’s highlighting, of course, an issue that needs to be talked about. There is a

Richard Lowe  19:45

place for whistleblowers, and that’s something that’s important that we have in a free society, but there is risk associated with that. Are you ever going to be hired again? Maybe you will.

Erik Boemanns  19:58

Yeah, it does happen. It’s funny that you talked about the reputation scanning the companies will do. Years ago, I actually worked for a company. And that’s what their entire business was what this is. Twitter is brand new. So we, we were investigating how to do this on Twitter. But it’s more on the message boards that used to be out on the internet. And absolutely, we were we were probably those message boards, gathering that data and then doing some automated and some manual analytics, see what people were talking about for, for brands for a new game launched or new music? Elements? What were people talking about? What was that reputation? But it is something that, obviously, like you said, a large company can do internally, or there’s still lots of these companies who will do that research for the big names to see what are people saying about you. And then the good and the bad are the ones that rise to the top or the middle stuff we ignore from a data perspective, but those bad comments are gonna get detected in and put in a report somewhere.

Richard Lowe  21:02

And sometimes they’ll put a little comment, they’ll automatically add a comment to your comment saying calls customer support, for example, I’ve seen that a lot. Yes. And sometimes it won’t. And sometimes if you’re an employee, you might get a call from a lawyer cease and desist order. I’ve known that to happen. Those are uncomfortable. It’s not the end of the world. But the point is, is that you’re trying to establish a positive brand about yourself. That’s the that actually is the best way to find a job because going in the front door, which is sending a resume out to 50,000 companies like a lot of people do. Yeah, those get filtered and they get in a big pile. I put out a job for a DBA while ago, back at my back of my old job. And I got over 700 resumes in a stack and I had to hire more than a week you think I read 700 resumes? No, I was looking for like, Okay, this Gone? Gone. Gone. Gone. Gone. Okay, this looks good, you know, and but the back door, which is the networking door, getting a reference from somebody else? Yes. That is the key to getting a job, quickly. build that network. And then then maybe you build a rapport with Eric here. And then Eric likes you and he learns to he learns to understand where you’re coming from, he finds that you’re a great pen tester. And you show him some of his work. And then he knows the position of somebody who needs a pen tester. Eric might might refer you to that person. That’s gold.

Erik Boemanns  22:25

Right? Absolutely. We so improvements IT consulting, and we do put job postings out there and we do get resumes. But still, I think a huge percent of our hires end up being referrals. And it’s partly because if you pictured want to work with Tom, fictional Tom, and you work for us, then we probably want there’s no time to work for us as well, right? Because we already know you. And if you know them, it’s going to elevate them above people who we’ve had no clue what you know, what they’re about. And so referral is still a powerful about every industry, every company, but still a super powerful way to to have like skip the resume stack and at least be on the top. That doesn’t mean they don’t get the energy. It doesn’t mean you don’t do your due diligence. But you at least have a known quantity coming into the door, that if your resume alone will never get you.

Richard Lowe  23:29

In fact, I was talking to a sister last night doing something else. And he was telling me that, that he’s been hired numerous times, and not one of the people who interviewed him even looked at it even asked for his resume. Right. It’s his reputation and his LinkedIn profile. And, and his the way he came across an interview, they didn’t even look at his resume and care, right?

Erik Boemanns  23:54

Yeah, exactly. Yeah. We, it’s a great point. And I will say, when I’m acting as a hiring manager, I do let our recruiting team screen the resume, right? If they’re coming in through the resume portion. For me, the resume is a conversation device. It’s not a filtering device. Well, by the time it’s on my desk, I’m already talking to the person so I just need to know what to talk to them about. And that’s, if you think about the resume is one, how do you get through the screening? And two, how do you make conversation device? I think it does give a little bit more sense of why what you should be doing that right. So I know you and I don’t want to talk about resume advice here. That’s a whole nother topic that Oh, yeah. But I just sharing from my perspective at a time I’m looking at your resume and not using it to make the filtering decision, right. So

Richard Lowe  24:52

by the time I’m I was looking at resumes, I had my choice down to three people, and I was then I was there resume was mostly irrelevant by then. And I just use it for questions like, what was it? What was it? What is this gap on your employment and stuff like that? Yeah. And so forth. And, and but I was more concerned with the reputation, you know, who is vouching for you? Who is who reference reference to you? And as a ghostwriter. 70 to 80% of the jobs that come to me are referrals. Basically, people who know me or have done business with me, or who have heard about me, and say, Oh, I know this ghost writer, I didn’t blog for me, and it was pretty good. I got another job. Yeah. Same way in insecurity.

Erik Boemanns  25:39

It is. And it’s amazing. Like, you run your own business, right? Yeah. Yeah. And so when you run your own business, referral is critical. I did it myself for it work. And I read the newspaper to get the first few leads. But then that was the may have rather than twice, right, every other customer was, at that point. Even improving, today, we are the offices from Canada, Mexico, 15 different cities. Still a huge percent of our business is referral. We know, we worked with the CTO, his company, and he or she is now at a different company. And he says, Hey, we should bring them in, or all that kind of that word of mouth. referral marketing is powerful. At every level. I don’t know that there’s, I’m sure there are businesses where it’s more important to be on the shelf of the Home Depot or Walmart to design your product. But if you’re in the services side of things, which you and I are both services, referrals, still probably one of the most powerful marketing devices and, and what is but a giant referral network, right.

Richard Lowe  26:52

And then the second piece to your brand or big piece your brand is your interview skills. If you get if you get to the point where you’re talking to a person like me as a ghostwriter, people come to me they get referred, I talked to them. I nailed it on the interview. I mean, I’ve had people say I have 10 interviews lined up and after my interview, and I’m like the first one, they’re like, you’re done. You’re it. I’m hiring you now. And it’s because I interview well, okay, I’m, I’m typically introverted. I know, it doesn’t seem like it. And I used to be very, very shy. But I went, I did a lot of things like went to Toastmasters and learn how to speak to your organization did coaching, got a somebody who sat in front of me and pretended he was the interviewer, we went back and forth, and or we, I pretended I was interviewing, and we threw questions at each other hard questions, and coached each other. And that’s something you can do with anybody. You just have to, you have to make sure you’re not attacking each other. You have to make sure you’re, you’re drilling each other properly. And, and do it do it like business like that. You want to have those interview skills nailed. Because you can sell yourself on an interview. Easy if you go.

Erik Boemanns  28:01

Yeah. I have been on solely interviews, I’ve been improving for more than 10 years. So my experience of interviews on the other side of the desk has has faded a little bit but before that so many interviews, but also now that I’ve interviewed so many people it it’s it’s a super comfortable experience, right and, and like you shy and introverted and didn’t like meeting new people. And networking, I’m still challenged with a group networking event where how do you work the room and meet everybody is still a skill that I’m building one on one, something that they think I’m as good as I’m gonna be, obviously, practice might be better. But yeah, these coffee chats that we’re having on LinkedIn, are amazing for that as well, right? Because at that point, you’re talking to a total stranger, about staying, right. And so a job interview is high stress, and it’s high, highly targeted, and they’re going to ask you hard questions, that you want to be comfortable just talking to a stranger first. And so the coffee chats that LinkedIn members are doing is a great way just to practice that just having a conversation. Because, like you said, you can nail it in the interview. If you have the confidence to comfort, having fun in an interview, you are going to be so far ahead of the people who feel like they’re being interrogated and right, if you’re, and I know that as a hiring manager in the past, I’ve interviewed people, the people who sit there and just have a conversation with me about the topic are going to be so much higher than then the people who you’re when I’m talking to them, literally dragging information out of them like Yeah, tell me more about this. One word answer. Tell me more about that one word answer, right. It’s just to people.

Richard Lowe  29:55

I will tell you an interesting story. We’re coming to the end of this interview here but you This story was my favorite hire. His name was Ross. And his wife came in for an interview with HR, she was going to get a job at HR. So while she was interviewing, he was sitting in the lobby, and I happened to walk by. And he introduced himself. He sounded like Wolfman Jack, if you know who he is, with the, with the harsh voice and stuff. And we started talking just because he was a fun guy. And he mentioned he used to own a motorcycle shop and he sold it. And he wrote this back, and he had a steel plate in his head and blah, blah, blah. And he came across really well. He was really friendly and stuff. And he was like, Well, you got a position open. And I’m like, Nah, not really. But you know, you and I keep talking to him. And I realized that I wanted him on my team, because he was so good with me and so good with people. So I made a position for him. And I hired him. And even though I’ve been gone from that company, now for nine years, he’s still there. And he’s been there. I think I hired him 15 years ago. And he became, he wasn’t technical, he went to Dubai and guy that got a certifications and stuff. So I put him in place as the person who negotiates with vendors, and the person who, who helps users with hurt feelings, you know, and dealt with the managers and things. So he was my, my person who talked to people because he was so good at it and ordering things, negotiating contracts. And he loved it. And he had a job, and it was something he could do and, and it was great on my team having somebody who wasn’t technical, necessarily, but who knew technology. And it all happened because he just came in and talk the talk. And then was able to walk the walk, of course. And I remember his words, he says, Well, I want Why don’t you just take a chance? Let me tell you what, you know, if it’s 30 days, it ain’t working out. You just tell me. And I’ll just leave, it’s fine. You know, and I’ll even put that in writing and stuff. And we shook hands on it. And he’s still there.

Erik Boemanns  31:56

That’s awesome. Yeah, amazing. Thinking story. And, and it’s, I don’t think it’s unusual, honestly. Right. I think there’s a lot of people who found their face that exact way. So

Richard Lowe  32:09

yeah, and that was, that was, of course, a quirk. But you’re at one of these networking events, and you start talking to somebody and you come off impressive. That’s why I highly recommend Toastmasters. That’s a that’s a group. They’re in most cities, they have meetings, usually in the morning or in the evening, and you go to them and you learn to speak. So one week, you’re speaking the next week, you’re critiquing somebody speaking. So it’s goes back and forth. And you learn all of the things you need to do. And you do different kinds of speeches, you learn how to put humor in and stuff like that. And it really makes you comfortable with people. And highly, highly, highly recommended. I think they cost you know, somewhere around 100 bucks a year, it’s not a big fee. Right? And some of them are free. There’s other groups that do that. But anyway, that’s when you’re networking, you’re communicating. And the better you can communicate, the better the easier it is for you to get in the worst you can communicate, it’s going to be harder for you to get in.

Erik Boemanns  33:09

Right? No, exactly. And yeah, Toastmasters is great. I have not used them. But I know lots of people that have and, and speak highly of it. And for me, it’s more never had the opportunity from a scheduling perspective to do it. And probably should. And I’ll tell you what I did, though, to get just more comfortable with it. His every company I’ve worked for has had some sort of Lunch and Learn program where you pick a topic and typically work related and you present and super safe environment, right? It’s your coworkers, probably some friends. And, and hopefully some people give you some constructive criticism as well. But if nothing else, so just get you comfortable. And that way you can gradually increase your audience right to strangers to include larger and larger groups. And so that’s really what helped me also, the idea of remotes talking and being more comfortable as well. It’s like, I’m talking to a camera right now. And in Richard voice, right. Exactly. Exactly. LinkedIn, live events are not nearly as scary, right? Because it’s just a camera that I’m talking to.

Richard Lowe  34:19

Yep. Even though you might be talking 200,000 people?

Erik Boemanns  34:22

Definitely, eventually. Yeah. Yeah,

Richard Lowe  34:24

I guess another thing I’ve done successfully is library reading groups. And there’s, there’s all kinds of organizations in the area where you can get in talk, and I’ve given speeches at libraries. It used to be where you couldn’t get me on stage to save my life. I mean, I had no I won an award and they couldn’t get me on stage to accept it. And now I’m like, give me 50,000 People, I’m happy to talk. And it’s funny how that changes over life. Because you realize you’re not going to die if you’re on stage. Even if you can’t even if you’ve blow it, you know, you’re not gonna die.

Erik Boemanns  34:57

Right. And most people in that audience are scared or more scared than you are on stage. So, yeah, and

Richard Lowe  35:05

if you blow it, you make it into a joke. And people laugh and you pretend like you intended to do that. You can use techniques like that, anyway. Yeah, these are all ways. And I have to say that that language can be a barrier language barriers. But I found when I was hiring for the last company I was working for that it was easy to overcome, because they were good. They were good speakers, even though they had a rough time. Like I had a Russian. He was very, it was hard to understand him sometimes. But he communicated so well, that it didn’t matter. Yes. So I was like, Okay, fine. You know, I’ll hire Russian, that’s totally fine. You know. And it worked out? Well, because I was kind of proud. I had one of the most diverse staffs that Trader Joe’s because I, I mean, you know, I, I like diverse staffs, because it gives me different viewpoints. Absolutely. You know, I mean, I had, from all over the world, I had a camera, somebody from Cameroon, somebody from Cuba, and got got these, they had somebody raise their hand in the meeting and say something like bla bla, bla, bla bla, and I never thought of that before, you know. He had an IT department in Cameroon, and then, and learned something totally different than I did in a different way. And it was, it was fascinating. I learned a lot from that experience about that. So I mean, language barriers there there. There’s a, there’s a lot of people I see on LinkedIn, who are immigrants, and that’s fine. Just Just don’t worry about it. If you need to take courses or coach with somebody to fix to help overcome that, then do that. But don’t be overly concerned about it. It’s not going to stop you.

Erik Boemanns  36:53

Yeah, yeah. And not just you said immigrants, but my man is a worldwide network. And so many, when I post, I post a couple of times, I’ve had people from Eric dent, Artica. Right, respond to post before and I’m still trying to get Antarctica hopefully someday, somebody will do it. But they got they got more important things to think about them LinkedIn and America.

Richard Lowe  37:18

I bet you you haven’t gotten anybody from Kazakhstan yet, though.

Erik Boemanns  37:22

Probably not. Just at the content level, not every country. So

Richard Lowe  37:26

I got a LinkedIn I did. I used to do LinkedIn profile optimizations I still do. And I had one in Kazakhstan. And that was very interesting, I guess. Yeah. Yeah. We had a couple offline community meetings about life in Kazakhstan and stuff, because I was so fascinated, and he wanted to know about America, and, and totally different mindset, you know, more of a communist style upbringing. And it’s interesting. I think all in this on, it’s important to understand whether you’re going for cybersecurity, some other field because we kind of wandered around into hiring. Yeah. It’s the World Wide Web, as you pointed out, it’s the world. So if you’re scared of finding a job, you’ve got how many hundreds of millions of companies out there that are looking for people, millions, at least 10s of millions, just in the United States, and you’ve got the entire world? I’ve had clients all over the world. Yeah. And one of my books was from guy in France, and then, you know, another one was Singapore, and, and another one from China, Taiwan. And it’s like, don’t, don’t be. I mean, obviously, there’s intimidation and all that it was timezones can be tough, but it’s a remote world in many ways. Go out there and

Erik Boemanns  38:44

find it. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. The whole world is available to us through social media, through the internet through Danza.

Richard Lowe  38:55

Yeah, it’s a different world. Yeah. Any closing words to our audience? Um,

Erik Boemanns  39:00

I think, to your point, we started on cybersecurity. But then we moved into hiring in general. And I think that’s fine, because security is a profession like all the others, right? And so the same rules, apply networking, having good connections, having a good profile, having all those rules are going to apply to you whether it’s cybersecurity or not, it makes it be more relevant to cybersecurity. Right now, because there’s a lot of movement around that a lot of people trying to be seen, but that’s kind of true of all the professors I think so. Yeah, lean in and figure out how to leverage it reach out to people connect with folks like myself, like Richard, we’re here. I’ll speak for myself, Richard, I’m here to help. And I think you’re too and so yeah, take advantage of what’s out there.

Richard Lowe  39:48

Yes. And thank you very much for being here. I am Richard Lowe. This is the technology influencers Podcast. I’m a ghostwriter. And I write books and blogs for people and I also opt To my LinkedIn profiles, and I do career coaching. So if you need some help, you can approach me and we can work something out. And I can help in some way or other, even with just a few lines of advice here and there. But as you said, one of my goals in life is to help people who, that’s why I chose ghost writing. I like writing and I like to help people in a book helps somebody or blogs helps a company or writing a LinkedIn profile certainly helps a person. So that’s the end of that.

Richard Lowe
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