Think branding is just about business? Well, think again because job hunting is very much about your personal brand. Much like corporate branding, your personal brand encompasses how you present yourself, the expectations you set, how you interact and the feedback you receive.
And, much like corporate branding, it will create a positive or negative response in the people you interact with.
Here’s a guide to ensuring your personal brand tells the right story to prospective employers…
Your brand story – aka your resume
On the job front, your “brand story” is who you are and what you stand for. It’s the information that goes into your CV and resume that allows prospective employers a glimpse into your identity.
It’s the quick synopsis of what you’ve done and the expertise you offer. As your career grows this brand story grows with it and should be consistently revised to reflect your skills.
Your brand presentation – aka your attire, interview skills and social media profiles
From the way your resume reads to the attire you select for a job interview, your brand presentation should also consistently reflect who you are and what you offer.
That means dressing appropriately for any job interviews, and ensuring your resume is word-perfect, with no spelling mistakes, and no grammatical issues.
Meanwhile, in a digital age you need to be careful your social media profile reflects your brand presentation. Make no mistake, many potential employers Google candidates, actively seeking out their social profiles to ascertain whether the image they present in CVs and job interviews corresponds with the attributes they present socially.
Feedback for your brand – aka your referees
Just as consumers look for feedback on a business or company before using their services, employers actively seek feedback on potential employees when assessing job candidates. They do this by asking for references and contacting referees.
Meanwhile, it’s important to note the employment sphere can be a small world, which is why it’s important not to burn bridges.
Even if you’re leaving a job because it doesn’t suit, you need to do so professionally, respectfully and with the right amount of notice. Leaving on bad terms or failing to fulfill workplace requirements puts your “brand” at risk.
The expectations of your brand
Your resume, presentation, and references all add up to create the expectations of your brand. They indicate whether you are qualified, have the desired personality attributes and grooming to meet the employer’s needs in a prospective job.
This makes it important to ensure the expectations you establish are accurate, i.e. you can deliver the skills you say you can, your previous experience accurately reflects what you have done, and your presentation consistently lives up to the image you present.
Meeting these expectations, you have established adds up to a career of success, where your personal brand is more likely to attract employers.
The Father James Grant Foundation offers willing young job seekers four-week programs aimed at providing the workplace and life skills you need to find a job. To learn more about our Mission Engage Programs and the renowned businesses we work with, see here.