For a product to succeed in the marketplace, it needs a great brand reputation. For you to succeed in getting the job you want, you need the same thing.
In a competitive job market, it’s important to stand out in the crowd. Your personal brand is what will help you do that. It’s an integral part of your ability to “sell” yourself to employers.
Your Personal Brand
Your personal brand is composed of several things:
- Skills and qualifications: Your key talents and abilities, and what you’re good at
- Achievements: How you’ve made an impact
- Passions: What you love doing and how it’s infused in your work
- Value: What you offer that an employer needs
- Look: Your attire and overall appearance
It’s a great idea to develop a brand statement. For example, Jane Murdoch is a conflict management professional. Her personal brand statement might be, “I turn conflict into agreement.” A brand statement keeps you centered on how you want to define yourself.
Using Your Brand in Your Job Search
You can use your personal brand in all phases of your job search, including networking, how you present yourself in your résumé and cover letters, and in interviews.
Networking is more important than ever in today’s job market. A personal brand can help you feel more self-assured as you network. Here are some ways to display your personal brand:
- Introduce yourself using elements of your brand. Example: “I’m Jane Murdoch and I turn conflict into agreement. As the owner of Better Communications, Inc., I teach people how to resolve conflicts and manage change.”
- Print up business cards. The most effective cards include the individual’s photo, contact information and personal brand statement. For example, “I turn conflict into agreement.”
Résumés and Cover Letters
Strengthen your résumé and cover letters by highlighting your unique skills and abilities, and how you’ve applied them.
- State a brief career objective or skills summary at the top of your résumé. Show that your expertise matches the requirements of the particular job.
- Focus on measurable achievements — they are far more compelling than job titles and responsibilities. For example, say that you, “Increased sales by 40 percent,” or “expanded the program from one county to four.”
- Get help from AARP to create fresh cover letters using the elements of your personal brand.
A major component of your brand is how you present yourself in public.
- Show a positive attitude; be alert, interested and confident.
- Be aware of your body language and maintain eye contact.
- Pay attention to your appearance; make sure your look is up-to-date, professional and energetic.
It’s Your Brand — Make It Unique
Your personal brand can help you stand out from the crowd. Use it to sell your skills and get the attention you deserve from employers!
- Check out AARP work resources and Life Reimagined for Work for job resources, including help with cover letters and résumés.
- Develop a brand statement based on your skills, achievements, passions and the value you hold for employers.
- Use your brand across all facets of your job search.
- Create a business card that brands you with your name, contact information and brand statement.
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