Can Instagram overshadow TikTok? Can you job hop successfully?

published4 months ago
6 min read

Hey there,

Welcome to all the recent new subscribers, and a thank you to those who have been here from the beginning. I’ve been outdoors a lot this summer, taking waaay too many photos of my random hikes & adventures, partly to share, partly to serve as a ‘physical’ memory. Since I didn’t travel as much this past year, I’ve also been (digitally) flipping through old photo albums too, dreaming of when I can do another big trip abroad. My guess is that many of you are doing the same thing. You may also want to take a few minutes to think about where you are sharing & storing all those memories!


With 2 big photo-related announcements recently from Google and Facebook, I’m curious to see the impact on how individuals/consumers experience and store photos & memories moving forward.

A few weeks ago, Instagram officially announced it is trying to become TikTok. It’s not surprising that Facebook has decided to ride the increasingly popular video wave that Tiktok unleashed. Completing its transition from just photos to an entertainment app. (Will FB now go the route of original content development (ala the ill-fated Quibi)? Or only stay as a platform for creators of all types to share their own content?)

If you want to keep sharing just photos, here is a great list of Instagram app alternatives for photographers -- and fascinating that Twitter is first on their list. And if you want to try an app where you can share photos but that bans selfies, check out Poparazzi.

This article makes an interesting point tho: is this pivot to video something users want, or is it simply the next step in an ad-driven social media model? I also wonder if there will be a user rebound back to photos, once the majority of us are not in lockdown. My guess is that video has increased in popularity because we’re all stuck at home, it’s more engaging/entertaining, and what else did you have to do? But when you’re engaged back in life again someday soon, will you have the same amount of time to surf videos? Or will you naturally revert back to consuming more static content again? Facebook, TikTok and others are betting on the former. I recently joined Faves which has a different take on content sharing/curation -- more on that in a future newsletter.

The other big change came from Google who imposed stricter photo storage limits as of Jun 1. We all know that with a phone, you take zillions of crappy photos and keep them all “just in case.” Very few of us curate our photo collections (especially when you include snapshots, selfies, etc), and with Google Photos machine learning, I can search for my dog and all the cute photos appear (without me having to curate). With this new photo storage limit, consumers may be searching for alternatives. The Verge and Tom’s Guide have two comprehensive articles to help with evaluating new services. Or if you’re really motivated, try self-hosting your own photo storage site. Either way, you could do your own analysis of your photo habits, and try to determine what you photograph more: objects or selfies? And ponder what that says about you?

Making the switch to a new job in tech? Let me help you find the tech job of your dreams as I've done for so many others: Check out my Coaching options here.


In my recent LinkedIn post about cultivating two types of networking contacts, a colleague made a comment about the unintended consequences of job hopping from the perspective of a hiring manager. I thought it would be helpful to see our comments and explore steps you can take as an early career professional to navigate career transitions successfully.

Comment from a hiring manager: “When you know you found a truly strong candidate, through networking the confidence is surely there, but you're also stung by the recent trend of young fresh graduates switching jobs frequently, sometimes every month. The amount of training the employer provided is all gone before even it converts into a value for the company. I appreciate that young grads are growing, but I wish they had someone to guide them since it's affecting the employer. Wondering if we could write an article about it.”

My reply: “That is a really good insight to share with early-career professionals. Some amount of job-hopping is expected in the first 3-5 years of a career -- but it should be weighed against the lasting impression one is leaving with those employers (aka future mentors & advisors). I'll try to put some thoughts down for a future post.” And here is that post!

These challenges will only get worse because (a) we have a frothy job market in tech, (b) that froth means companies are dangling lots of shiny perks to lure talented professionals away, (c) not all early career professionals know who to turn to for good, personalized advice, and (d) it is getting harder and harder to build a career arc in an industry that is ever-evolving.

Before you decide to job hop, do these 3 things:

  1. Ask yourself Question #1: in 5 years, will you regret not taking this leap?
    • Very early in my career, I was offered the chance to move to a remote Caribbean island to serve as a live-in tutor/caretaker for a wealthy family. Surf and swim by day, tutor in evening, and my own cottage in the family compound! I had friends who said to jump at the chance while others thought it was crazy to leave NYC for that kind of work. A tiny part of me wonders what life would be like now if I had taken that gig, but most of me remembers that at that time in my life, I had other priorities I was more passionate about pursuing. No regrets (tho if that job came up
    • Self-knowledge is critical here so you don’t have regrets. Try to be objective in evaluating your current job situation against where you hope to be in 3-5 years. It’s a short enough time horizon to not feel overwhelming, but long enough to put today’s situation in perspective.
    • And remember, it’s still all a learning process. Asking yourself these questions now ensures that you have the information you need to look back and assess your decision & the criteria you used. Sometimes there is no clear answer -- but at least if you ask the Q now, you can review it later without judgment. There are very, very few career mistakes that you cannot recover from.
  2. Ask yourself Question 2: are you leaving now to avoid navigating an important challenge at your current job?
    • It’s also worth taking into consideration what might happen to your manager, your team, and your projects if you left -- but do not stay only because you feel guilty for leaving them.
    • Considering your work situation and your colleagues will help you evaluate whether you are avoiding a prickly team conflict or a hard upcoming project. In this case, you might be better served by asking for help or seeking out additional training. Then you’ll be building up your own management skills to handle these challenges and can pivot to a new role/company as a stronger candidate.
  3. Find someone you trust with an objective perspective who can discuss this career move with you.
    • If you’re not sure your manager will be receptive (and some aren’t), try to find an internal mentor who knows the company landscape to advise you -- or find an external coach or advisor to bounce ideas off of. I’ve helped many candidates discuss their situation and what makes sense for them.
      1. At Google, we had a program called Gurus. As an employee, you could sign up to speak with other employees in manager-level positions, who would give promotion/career advice with strict confidentiality that they wouldn’t share with your manager. They served as knowledgeable mentors to help you navigate the often chaotic career development trajectory that is Google. If a similar program doesn’t exist, try to identify an individual who knows your work to advise you.
    • Talk to your coach or advisor about how to approach your manager to discuss career options internally. This is often something that new career professionals avoid, assuming they will get a better deal externally & use it to ask for a raise/promotion. It rarely works that way as now your manager is unsure about your level of commitment to their team/org. Managers want to know that you can stick with projects when it’s tough, and that their investment in you (via training, mentoring) will be worth it. Having an honest conversation about your goals and how they dovetail with your manager’s priorities will only help you in the long run.

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Only fitting that I share some cool photo-related article: Trippy photos show how beautiful water can look when it's blasted with sound

Send me your questions! Do you have a tech topic you'd like me to explore further? Or maybe a career or job search question you'd like me to address? Hit reply to let me know!

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