You have heard of USP? Your “Unique Selling Proposition” and “The Brand Called You” but have you thought about how to market yourself in this way? This is your personal brand.
How can you be proactive and manage your career development in such a challenging and ever changing employment environment? Here are some steps to take which will give you some clarity about what is necessary to be noticed in the current fast moving world of work and get the job(s) to suit you.
- Know who you are, what you have to offer! Do you really know your strengths? Can you articulate them well and know how to match them to opportunities? If you have completed a strengths profile then that is a great step in the right direction. However I unashamedly recommend you take the Harrison Assessment Questionnaire. It is the best I have worked with in terms of providing accurate information about your behavioural preferences and how they match to job and career opportunities. I have countless examples of positive outcomes from using this tool. This first step towards personal branding will open your eyes to possibilities. It is the foundation.
- Communicate your brand. Once you know your strengths and have a clearer career focus you need to assess whether this information is evident in your marketing material? Nowadays we are not just talking about your resume, but also your online presence, social media, LinkedIn, even your own website. You could even create a portfolio of your offerings. Now more than ever we need to follow the wisdom of Charles Handy who said over 20 years ago that we would need a portfolio of skills. You will probably have multiple identities or labels (titles) in your lifetime. It is not going to be how it has always been! You might create a video and an online resume. Or I have recently come across www.squarespace.com which is a simple approach to creating your own brand using your own domain name. On your own site you can create your message, your tagline, your own vision and aspirations, how you can be an asset to an organisation, business or another entrepreneur.
- Become memorable. How do you do that? Network personally, socially and also virtually using social media. If networking frightens you read this other blog that provides more helpful tips. Be businesslike about this. Have a plan and a purpose. Be clear about what the purpose and direction is. If you want to get in front of the employers, then what are you presenting to your network so they can become your ambassadors. Can they effectively promote your USP because they have a clear picture of your strengths or they have the links on social media platforms to pass on your details?
- Stay marketable even after you have a new job opportunity. This is vital in our dynamic world. You cannot rest on your laurels, heave a sigh of relief and sit back for the next 10 years. Maintain and update your knowledge, broaden your experience and keep an eye on changes in the market place. What strings do you need to add to your bow (portfolio)?
This might sound very commercial in its approach. You could easily retort that “I can’t sell myself” and “I don’t network”, well whatever you say, you will be right!
If you want to change that mindset then engage a coach to help expand your thinking, expectations and then results.