Dear Future Employer…

If you or your HR rep is any good, you will be doing a social media background check on me and you will have found my blog, EMScholar. I’d like you to consider the blog a portfolio of my growth as an Emergency Manager and humanitarian. While the blog is professional in nature, I did not try to hide my personal beliefs because I don’t believe you can separate the personal from the professional and neither do you. During an interview, for instance, you are looking for a gut reaction which tells you if you like the person or not, whether they’ll be a good fit or not–not whether they’re good at their job.

So since I haven’t hidden my personal beliefs, you will notice that I have posted some religious-in-nature content. Perhaps this concerns you because you might work for a non-religious or even governmental entity and–if we were to be honest–the political strategies and comments of the “Religious Right” have made all religious people seem a little crazy. Or perhaps my religious content makes you nervous because you are religious too and you don’t know if I believe the same things you do. And–unfortunately–religious people are known for being passionately and aggressively against any idea which they oppose.

Let me assure you that, while I am religious, I will not treat you or your ideas poorly. I cannot avoid the fact that I am motivated–in part–by my religious upbringing. Like Jesus, I care about people and I want to work to alleviate suffering. Unlike Jesus, I am not here to proselytize. I will not treat homosexuals, Arab immigrants, atheists, scientists, or even you with disrespect. I will not try to change your mind, make you feel guilty, or act ‘holier-than-thou’. Instead, I will love people and work to protect their freedom to believe what they want. I will be curious about you and your perspective. I will work with you and be an eager participant in teams. I will work hard, be professional, be cheerful, eat good food, and drink good drink. I will be responsible for my mistakes, apologize, and do better next time. I will be a good citizen, a good daughter, wife, sister, and mom, and a good employee.

Unfortunately, I will also have integrity. I will act ethically. I will criticize poor quality programs, wasteful use of money, and corruption. I cannot be bribed. I will hold myself and you to be responsible to our constituents/clients, and I will be obnoxiously, stubbornly opposed to unethical activity.

If that sounds good to you, then I think we should get into business together.
Sincerely Yours,

Johanna N. Hanson

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