Amybeth Hale – Research Goddess


Why “Research Goddess”?
February 2, 2010, 7:00 am
Filed under: Networking/Social Media, Rants, Recruiting, Research, Thoughts

“Research Goddess” is a silly nickname that was assigned to me nearly 4 years ago. The story behind how it came to pass is pretty interesting, so let me share with it with you and put to rest any notion that its meaning is anything more than completely fun and innocent.

When I left my first internet research job, which I held for 4 years, I also left a sizable internet research community via a listserv (numbering near 500 participants). As it was a proprietary listserv, I was no longer allowed access to it. I started my blog in order to stay connected to several of these researchers as well as to meet new people outside of that community. My first blog, by the way, was called “SPI Research” (now simply a placeholder), NOT Research Goddess. Research Goddess came about after I had conversations with Joel Cheesman and Jim Stroud. Joel informed me that I needed to create a memorable identity (as he did with Cheezhead), and Jim told me it would be in my best interest not to tie my blog directly to the company for which I worked at the time. He told me it would be hard to continue with the blog title “SPI Research” if I ever left SearchPath International, which I eventually did a year later.

Jim and I played around with some new possible blog titles on the phone one day, most of which I cannot recall now. In jest, I threw out “Research Goddess” and the line went silent. I thought at first I’d lost the connection, or that it was a horrible idea, but then I heard an enthusiastic “That’s awesome!!” from Jim. I chuckled, stating that it was just a joke, but Jim insisted that it was a great blog title and a memorable one at that. To this day, whenever Jim calls me or I call him, he always greets me with “Hello, Goddess!” It makes me giggle that he still does this, as it’s all in good fun.

As months turned into years, the nickname stuck. In fact, when I go to conferences now, I usually introduce myself and then throw in “I write Research Goddess”, and only then do I get the “Ohhhh, I know who you are!” responses. I am almost better known by my silly pseudonym than I am by my real name. What this tells me is 1) it’s a memorable nickname, but 2) I need to do a better job of tying who I really am in with the nickname. Working on that…

As a test to those of you reading this, here are a couple of other popular ‘nicknames’ of people you might recognize:

  • The Sourceress
  • The Searchologist
  • Cincy Recruiter
  • HR Bartender
  • The Recruiter Guy
  • The Red Recruiter
  • Recruiting Animal
  • MN Headhunter

While you may not know their real names off the top of your head, you recognize the names and know that each has a niche or a gimmick that is recognized and understood. That’s one of the important parts of creating a memorable identity for yourself. And one of the reasons “Research Goddess” has stuck to me.

Does it mean I believe I am a goddess? Heck no. I’m just another girl in this game, trying to learn and grow just like the rest of you, while sharing my thoughts with this little community. And quite honestly, for those of you who know me, I mean REALLY know me, you know that pretentious, selfish, or conceited are not words that describe me. Opinionated, yes. You’ll never have to wonder where I stand on issues. But having an opinion does not equate to being full of oneself.

If you think that the nickname “Research Goddess” means that I think I am an expert or a guru of sorts, please talk to any of my peers and learn otherwise. I will say that I feel blessed to have had opportunities cross my path that have enabled me to learn and develop my skills. As such, I do believe I have a decent grasp on good research techniques as well as some application of social media technologies when it comes to sourcing. Also, I believe my peers will tell you that I certainly have earned any praise that I have received. I believe I’ve worked hard and contributed some value to this industry, and I hope I’ve done a good job of paying it forward as well. BUT… I know I still have SO much to learn, and you will never hear me say anything to infer that I feel I’ve ‘arrived’. EVER.

If after having talked to my peers you still believe there is a conceited, pretentious, or conniving underlying purpose for my blog and my nickname, I strongly urge you to leave a comment here. Or call me directly – (360) 389-3227 – and let’s talk. Give me your thoughts as to why you believe this of me, and make some constructive suggestions for alternatives. I’m open to all ideas if you think I should take another direction. All I ask is that you don’t judge me or my intentions until you get to know me.

In the end, you’re certainly entitled to think whatever you want to about me. But I believe my work, my track record, and my peers’ experiences with me speak louder than anything else. I hope this sheds some light on the whole ‘research goddess’ thing. It’s just a stupid nickname, but it helps people recognize and remember me. And in my book, that’s a good thing.

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6 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I love your name! My initial impressions: strong, confident female who does or likes research. Keep your chin up. Having 4,576 followers says more than anyone could interpret from a name!

Comment by HerMjsT

Amybeth,

I don’t know you personally, but have gotten to “know” you through your tweets and blog posts, which I enjoy. I must admit though that the name Research Goddess did put me off a bit at first, as it does indeed sound pompous and pretentious. It did not take too long to figure out from your writing that was not what you were like – and that the name was meant to be tongue-in-cheek. However, you do understand, especially in your line of business, that first impressions matter a lot, and that people will make decisions – right or wrong – based on them. Not everyone will bother to “get to know you” if they are put off by your branding.

I also was left wondering – “what kind of research does she do?”. As an internet researcher myself, I was wondering where I could find your technical papers! A name like “Recruiting Animal” is much less ambiguous.

I hope you find this comment helpful – I’d be happy to discuss it more if you would like.

Comment by Chris Volinsky

Hey Amybeth! Great post – and for the record you are anything but coceited and pompous. I’ve been reading your blog for a couple of years now and you’re one of the most down to earth bloggers I know.

But here are some anagrams of “Reserch Goddess” that I’ve worked up as alternatives if you’re looking for a change…

Across greed shed
Caress red she-dog
Drag dress echoes
Crash deed ogress
Gosh! Recess Dread
Chaos dress greed
Red sad chess ogre
Odd regress chase

All the best…

Rax Lakhani

Comment by Rax

Amybeth,

I like the name that you chose!

This paragraph:

“If after having talked to my peers you still believe there is a conceited, pretentious, or conniving underlying purpose for my blog and my nickname, I strongly urge you to leave a comment here. Or call me directly – (360) 389-3227 – and let’s talk. Give me your thoughts as to why you believe this of me, and make some constructive suggestions for alternatives. I’m open to all ideas if you think I should take another direction. All I ask is that you don’t judge me or my intentions until you get to know me.”

…leads me to believe that someone gave you hell about the name. Pay no attention to them – they are probably producing crappy content and have little more to focus on than your chosen brand name. People never cease to amaze me!

Keep on keepin’ on! You’re doing great!

Michael (AKA The Red Recruiter) ;-)

Comment by Michael Long (The Red Recruiter)

Amybeth,

And by the way… if someone called you out publicly, in an unfair manner, you should talk about it – I’m sure we can all learn from that person’s approach.

Looking forward,
Michael

Comment by Michael Long (The Red Recruiter)

Amybeth,

Your blog is one of very few that I come back to time and again, always knowing I will find something interesting. Your writing and conversations speak for themselves. If anyone suggested you were anything other than inquisitive, eager to learn and generous then they clearly haven’t taken time to get to know you – even in a superfluous online sense.

Take care,
Katharine

Comment by Katharine Robinson (@TheSourceress)




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