update from the reader working for a boy band fan site

Remember the reader who was working for a boy band fan site and was wondering whether to include it on her resume, or whether it was too embarrassing? Here’s her update:

I actually have really exciting news to update everyone on after writing in about whether or not I should include my work for an *NSYNC fan site on my resume — IT GOT ME A JOB!  I put in my two weeks notice at my current position on Monday and am really excited for my next venture. I’m not going to go so far as to say it’s my dream job, but it sure as heck sounds like it.

I know my experience running Still *NSYNC isn’t the ONLY reason I was hired. I cannot even express how important networking is in job searching situations. I’m an incredibly introverted person and it takes everything I have in me to walk up to someone I’ve never met before and introduce myself or to email anyone out of the blue to ask for an informational phone call even if I have an alumni or personal connection to them. But I was at a conference in April and the director of the department I’m going to be working for was there and I somehow worked up the courage to introduce myself. We’ve been talking ever since and they basically created my new position for me!

In terms of the *NSYNC fan site, I want to thank everyone for their advice about putting it on my resume. It’s difficult to sit back and see it for the experience that it really is. I’m still growing the site hand over fist with some new initiatives to involve the fans and it only took a commenter pointing out that that’s fairly impressive for a fan site revolving around a boy band that hasn’t appeared together publicly in 11 years. Though I have to admit, Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel have helped out a ton with the site visits by getting married and all.

You provide an invaluable community here, Alison! I lead all of my interns to your site to learn and grow in their job searches. Thank you!

{ 35 comments… read them below }

    1. Jamie*

      Sasha just posted verbatim what I scrolled down to post…and because it can’t be said enough…


      I love good news.

        1. Jamie*

          Awww – this hearkens back to the warm fuzzy feeling of the original post. Although should people make food too cute to eat? :)

  1. AnotherAlison*

    Congrats! That’s a great outcome.

    I’m curious, how big of a role did the site play in your interviews/conversations, etc.? Wasn’t it more of a showcase for your skills than your paid experience was (trying to recall. . .)?

    1. OP*

      I should have specified this more. The site actually played a fairly large role in the hiring process, I think! Not only was it a fun ice breaker at the beginning of my interviews with different people, but the social media component is key. My new job is as a social media program manager and while my current (paid) position includes a great deal of creating and measuring social strategy, the number of followers/fans we have on the sites I manage is minimal due to the nature of our business. My new company has a humongous following – hundreds of thousands of followers, etc., as opposed to the hundred or so I talk to for my company. Still *NSYNC provided a happy medium where I was able to showcase that I can handle thousands of followers and fans while maintaining and growing that audience with relevant content.

      Plus, the website allowed me to plug in quantifiable data of my success – something my paid job doesn’t really provide (again, due to the nature of our business).

      The only downside to including the site on my résumé was that one of the people who interviewed me asked why I would ever do the amount of work I do there for free instead of consulting … My only response there is that it’s a labor of love. And, let’s be honest, it paid off in this fantastic holiday present of being able to accept an awesome job!

  2. jmkenrick*

    Well? Where is a link to the now-famous site?

    But seriously – congrats, that’s great news, thanks for updating.

    1. Blair Waldorf*

      I believe that the site is called Still ‘NSYNC.

      Congratulations, OP! This is such a delightful update.

  3. Amouse*

    My first reaction was almost to shriek out loud like a teenaged girl…which would be appropriate here :-) eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! Congrats!

  4. Victoria HR*

    LOL grats! You never know what is going to get you noticed. I play World of Warcraft and have gotten 1 job in part because of it; the hiring manager said it showed I have attention to detail with the raids and such. Then in my next job, once I started I met with the regional manager, and then we started discussing our characters :P It’s the differences that make us interesting.

    1. Jen in RO*

      I wish I could write a recommendation for my ex raid leader. Someone who manages to herd 25 people through 6 months of failed LK heroic attempts, keep morale up and not have a breakdown at the end of all that is definitely manager material! (And this guy is only 21.)

      WoW has taught me the opposite: I am *not* manager material. If raid leading 10 people for 2 weeks is too stressful for me, I don’t want to know what leading people in real life would feel like.

  5. !!*

    As someone who performed a really awesome rendition of Bye Bye Bye for my middle school talent show, I am thrilled to hear it worked out so well for you!!!

  6. Elizabeth West*


    I’ve quit hiding my blogs, and the fact that I am a writer. I’m going to mention it anyway, the blog linked to here is on my LinkedIn, and while my writer blog is sometimes a bit more irreverent, anyone doing due diligence will find it anyway because they’ll see my pen name on all my stuff. Besides, writing is a desirable skill. So there!

  7. BGirl81*

    I think you really can’t go wrong with a choreographed performance of “It’s Gonna Be Me” to wrap up a job interview, no? Congrats to the OP! :)

    1. Anonymous*

      Complete with frosted tips and a denim jacket and jeans distressed/randomly bleached to look funky. :)

      1. OP*

        I wish there was a like button on here. I should have thought of the choreography to close out the second interview!

  8. ChristineH*

    Congrats OP!! That post provided such a fun evening of commenting, so I’m happy to see there was a positive outcome.

  9. anon-2*

    Take it from a guy who has been around IS/IT/the computer industry for 40 years…

    If you cannot get into this game via the front door — using a back door is fine, too.

    Just remember – just like social networking – what you do out there , good or bad, sticks with you.

    One of my good friends in this business started in the early 90s – before the Internet was big. He had built one of the largest dial-up bulletin boards in the country. He had 2,500 registered users. He had 750 who made financial contributions. He had a team of six open sysops, and four more “secret sysops”.

    He ran it professionally.

    Two of us sat him down, in separate sessions, and advised him “you should turn pro.” He had the skills, the drive, and most of all, a professional attitude. He landed a job – with some good recommendations – as a support technician and is now in senior management …

    You might also recall a remarkable case – there is a guy named Matt Drudge, who authors The Drudge Report. Now, some people like him, and some people (in the media, especially) dislike him. Before the National Press Club, he explained that he didn’t have the “pedigree” to work at ABC News, or the Washington Post, or the New York Times — but he did have —

    – investigative drive
    – strong work ethic
    – a 386 computer with an Internet dial-up.

    Long story short – he broke what was arguably one of the biggest news stories of the 2oth century. And he broke into the business on his own. Like him or dislike him, he made it. Much to the consternation of the “gatekeepers”.

    Do what you have to do to get into the game. Just don’t do anything unethical that could come back to haunt you.

        1. anon-2*

          He didn’t directly “break” the Lewinsky story, but he reported that Newsweek magazine (RIP) had spiked the story.


          … effectively, grabbing one of the two biggest scoops in the 20th century (the other one being two cub city desk reporters, Woodward and Bernstein, stumbling into and developing the Watergate story).

          1. anon-2*

            To be fair, Woodward and Bernstein were not “cub” reporters in the “Jimmy Olsen” sense of the term; they were working at one of the most respected and prestigious papers in the United States (Washington Post).

            They were, of course, not on the national desk there, but the city desk that covered local events — but stumbled into the story of the century. According to the movie “All The President’s Men”, once the story began to snowball, the more lofty national desk wanted to take over the story but editor Ben Bradlee said – NO. W&B would continue to carry the ball on it.

            1. Ask a Manager* Post author

              Yes! And I can’t remember if I’ve ever told this story here or not, but my dad was working as a reporter on the metro desk for the Post at that time … and he was the one who got the initial call to go report on the break-in at the Watergate! But he was out playing basketball when his editor called, so his editor called Bernstein instead.

              I’ve always been bitter about this.

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