Make Yourself Marketable: Build Your Personal Brand
When we hear the word “brand” we usually associate it with a company or a product. Individuals can also develop a personal brand. Think of it as the impression you make on others regarding your ideals, expertise, ethics and what you stand for. It is something you continue to develop throughout your lifetime. It is important to be deliberate when building your brand so that your brand will help you facilitate opportunities that are right for you. How do you do that? Here are a few guidelines to get you on your way.
Who Are You?
Objectively assess yourself. What expertise have you honed throughout your career? What are you known for? What should you be known for? What matters to you? What do you stand for? Turn these questions into a 25 – 30-word statement of what your personal brand should be.
Your personal brand statement is not a static document. It should evolve as you progress through your life and career. I recommend revisiting your statement and adjusting it as necessary at least once per year.
Education and Experience
Now that you’ve written your personal brand statement, you need to own it and strive to become an expert and trusted advisor in your field. Pursue educational opportunities, both formal and informal. Go to conferences, read everything you can get your hands on, enroll in continuing ed classes and learn from mentors. Of course, the greatest ongoing education is experience.
You must have a platform for your brand. And today, that platform will be online via personal websites and social media. It seems obvious, but too often we see people who don’t take care of protecting their reputation on these platforms. Assume that an employer will always research your online reputation because they will. You should build an online persona that clearly aligns with your personal brand statement. That doesn’t mean you should be sterile and have no personality. On the contrary, it is important that you display personality. Just make sure that it aligns with your goals.
Sharing your knowledge and experience with up-and-comers is a great way to build your brand as an expert in your industry. Look for opportunities at work, as well as outside such as speaking engagements or professional associations.
Get People Talking About You
Obviously, you have to talk about yourself, your skills, your expertise, etc. to build your brand. However, when others talk about you it is much more impactful. If you do freelance work or run an SMB solicit reviews and references from your clients. Also, ask for professional reviews and recommendations on your social media platforms from colleagues and clients. If you make this solicitation a process rather than an event, you will amass a solid amount of good reviews in no time at all.
Danielle Foppe is a Lead Technical Recruiter at Business Centric Technology. If you are interested in learning more about how to get the best IT talent in the Dallas metroplex, contact Danielle directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 972-267-7950. Business Centric Technology specializes in recruiting IT talent in Dallas, Ft. Worth and North Texas. If you are looking for a rewarding career contact us today.