Saman Rahmanian: Tischen - Business interview

Entrepreneur Saman Rahmanian, founder of Tischen was kind enough to take the time to answer a few questions about his company and its services for job seekers.

Saman Rahmanian describes the reasons for establishing Tischen, the reasons he became an entrepreneur, and his hope of ending unemployment for as many people as possible.

Thanks to Saman Rahmanian for his time, and for his interesting and informative responses. They are greatly appreciated.

What was the background to developing the Tischen website and service?

Saman Rahmanian: Tischen is my answer to the unemployment crisis. At the height of our country’s economic downturn, people all around me were losing their jobs. Every time I turned on the news, another company was announcing major lay-offs, and I was struck by just how many talented, highly skilled people were suddenly out of work. I felt compelled to help. I realized that, even in a bad economy, there is still a need to get work done, and I knew that all of these skilled professionals were still highly marketable–just not necessarily in the same way as before.

So, I developed Tischen as a venue for job seekers to better market what they can do and be found by those who want it done. The goal is to get the world working again.

How does Tischen differ from other job finding websites?

Saman Rahmanian: Everyone has more skills to offer than what their last job title might suggest. Tischen.com puts all of a person’s talents out there for the world to see, through an inviting, personalized web page. A Tischen page not only lets you broadcast what you can do, but also when you are available to do it. These days, there’s less full-time work out there and it’s harder to make ends meet, so Tischen also helps individuals find freelance or side jobs, and makes it easier for people to take charge of their employment by working for themselves.

Tischen makes an online presence readily available to everyone – even those who might not otherwise have their own website – an online presence so they can bring in more work.
Anyone looking for help or services can search Tischen’s growing directory and contact prospects directly via e-mail or text. There is no middleman, and no fee for hiring (or getting hired) through the site.

What specific services does Tischen offer to employment seekers that sets Tischen apart?

Saman Rahmanian: Unlike other job sites that just post your resume, Tischen arms you with an online self-marketing package: a personal website, diverse and cost-free ways of promoting it, and a venue that allows people to find you easily.

We make it easy for anyone to have a strong web presence, even if they have no design skills or aren’t terribly web savvy. It takes just a few simple steps to create an individualized, professionally designed Tischen page, so not only can you let your personality shine, but you also get the gratifying advantage of having your page up and running on the web immediately.

Our free promotion toolkit includes downloadable business cards and flyers, and members can post their page to Craigslist, publish it to their LinkedIn and Facebook accounts, and embed widgets on their homepage. For a few dollars a month, anyone who wants extra features can get their own domain name, preference in search results, and text alerts whenever they get a job request.

Saman Rahmanian (photo left)

Your company offers Tischen pages free to job hunters. In general terms, how does your business model work?

Saman Rahmanian: We use the freemium model, offering free basic features, plus a paid membership upgrade for folks who are doing well and need extra services.

Does Tischen specialize in certain employment fields, industries, or geographical locations?

Saman Rahmanian: We want to be the world’s talent directory–so we’re open to every field, everywhere. We have people from over 100 different countries now on Tischen, including Lawyers, Painters, Babysitters, Bakers, Photographers, Tutors, Typists, Copywriters, DJs, Plumbers, Party Planners, Programmers, Artists and Actors.

How is Tischen using social media to to enhance the opportunities for prospective employers to meet available job hunters?

Saman Rahmanian: Tischen is tightly integrated with social media. This integration offers job hunters the benefit of modern-day job “matchmaking.” So often there are people in your circle of friends or networks who need the skills or talents that you have. Our social connection lets people see who amongst their friends and contacts is out there with the skills they need and brings both sides together to help each other out. Additionally, social media adds an important layer of trust to the hiring process – as people can search for reputable hires among mutual friends, and ask for references and referrals from people they already know and trust.

You left the corporate world for the challenge of entrepreneurship. What caused you to start your own business?

Saman Rahmanian: I was busy helping large corporations. When the economy tanked, I felt it was time to help the people. Starting my own business was the best way to do this. I took the same web design and communications skills I was using in advertising to market burgers and cars, and used them to build a job website that markets people. It was tough to leave the job I loved, but ultimately it was the right thing to do.

What advice do you have for people seeking employment in today's tough job market?

Saman Rahmanian: Start by rebranding yourself. If you’ve been out of work a long time or your last job title isn’t currently in demand, find out what other skills you need to learn or how to re-market the skills you have. We all have many hidden talents. The trick is to get them out there for the world to see.

What advice can you share for people accepting the challenge of entrepreneurship and starting their own business in today's economy?

Saman Rahmanian: The tougher the economy, the more there is a need for good ideas. Figure out what you are truly passionate about, no matter how quirky or odd, then build your idea around it. If your endeavor is something you really care about, you have a much greater chance for success.

Starting out on your own brings a lot of uncertainty and risks, but also brings a great sense of satisfaction. Being self-employed gives you an edge over companies you compete with because you can be more cost-effective and flexible, and those that hire you get your direct expertise, without having to go through layers to get to the person at the top. Market this edge for all its worth!

What is next for Saman Rahmanian?

Saman Rahmanian: 14.8 million people are still unemployed in this country. So much more needs to be done to help people get back to work. I think my goal of "ridding the world of unemployment" will keep me busy for quite a while.


About Saman Rahmanian:

The 5th most awarded art director in the world, Saman Rahmanian, decided to give up his career in the advertising industry to try and help “rid the world of unemployment.”

With unemployment still at a daunting 9.6% and no end to this crisis in sight, Saman Rahmanian understood the need for job seekers to reinvent themselves and market their skills differently than ever before. He created a new website, Tischen, aimed to help such people get working again. Tischen is a free online service that lets users create a free, personalized “Tischen page” advertising their services, hourly rate, availability and geographic location. Members can upload work samples to their page, download a business card template featuring their URL, and receive text message alerts when job opportunities arise.

Tags: Tischen, Saman Rahmanian, ending unemployment, business interviews.

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