Whether you are currently employed or looking for a new company, you should always look for opportunities to build your personal brand. When on average employees have 10 times more followers than the brand they work for you know your personal brand has value. By establishing yourself as an expert in your industry, you’ll always have an upper hand – whether you want a new job or a promotion at your current one.
Here are a few things that you can do that will help you stand out in the crowd the next time you are looking to move up the corporate ladder.
Utilize Social Media to Show Off Your Chops
If you want to get your name and credentials out to the most potential employers, social media is an excellent route. LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook can be excellent tools to help you build your personal brand. You can help others to get to know you better and learn about your experience and accomplishments by writing a powerful profile about yourself in the “about me” and summary sections on these sites.
Social media allows you the ability to share interesting articles, post about current projects or accomplishments, or maybe even create a blog. While you should always keep your social media pages professional, do not forget to personalize them with things that you are passionate about – this can make you stand out. Do you love sharing your expertise to help others become better? Great, giving away your best secrets for free will attract new followers in droves and show the world that you’re an authority in your niche. Business executives and professional athletes alike are using the strategy to position themselves for new opportunities such as sponsorships and second careers.
Professional poker player Annie Duke is a perfect example of building a personal brand as the queen of poker that translated into careers as a philanthropist and executive coach. With 4 career poker titles and $2.3 million in winnings, Duke is one of the most well-known female professional poker players in the world. Duke created a blog and social media channels that drew on her background as a behavioral scientist and poker player to help board room executives make better decisions through tools she teaches. Today, Duke has turned in her regular seat at the Texas Hold’em table for a lucrative coaching personal brand and consulting business.
Everyone is a Connection
Many don’t realize that potential connections are literally everywhere. Try to strike up a conversation every chance you get. Maybe you are in line at the coffee shop, or even playing golf, connections are everywhere and you should try to build relationships every time you have the opportunity. You never know who could potentially help you land your dream position down the road. Here are a few ways to maximize potential connections:
- Find a connector. Simply going to an event and meeting a few people isn’t enough. You want to maximize your chances by meeting as many people as possible. Find someone in charge of the event or an organizer to help introduce you to everyone they know. This not only increases your chances of a true connection but being introduced by an intermediary is better than a cold handshake.
- Discover a person’s hobbies and interests. Simply talking about business is boring and non-personal. You want to connect with people on an interpersonal level. Find out what they like by asking things like, “What neighborhood do you live in.” Chances are you know someone nearby or a favorite restaurant near them. These are personal conversation starters that can lead down a road to getting to know the person on a personal level.
Join Clubs and Organizations
After you have established your personal profiles on social media, you need to find ways for it to reach the people that count. Joining clubs and organizations online and in the industry is an excellent way to get your name out there and meet new connections. Look for groups that focus on your industry or field to join on professional sites such as LinkedIn. Build your network and experience by joining professional clubs, associations and attending conferences in person. Once you are actively engaged, these are great items to include on your resume and mention during interviews because they build your credibility and network.
As you can see, there is more to personal branding than just having a killer resume. With the enormous amount of competition in the workforce today, getting your name and experience out there can set you apart and give you the upper hand when you are looking for a new job or going after a promotion. The more you demonstrate your value by getting involved and getting your name out there, the more marketable you’ll be.