10 Ways to Use Personal Branding for a Career Change
Personal branding is a relatively new concept for us to get our heads around. Doing the preparation necessary to build our brand is a key part of the whole process of changing careers. Also seems to be link between the job market and our need to attend to our brand. There’s also in the case of technology a shift in the way employers…people…how recruitment process has been changing.
Read our 125 Personal Branding Tips eBook for more help with developing your brand.
1. Take it Seriously
Understand the importance of personal branding right now. You may think a personal brand is an optional extra but if you’re looking to change careers, you need a brand to convince employers to give you a chance in their sector, in your chosen role.
2. Get on LinkedIn
The popularity of LinkedIn is a testament to the number of people who are realize how vital creating a brand is to their professional success. If you are on LinkedIn, use it more. If you aren’t create an account and profile as soon as possible. There’s a reason why LinkedIn has 200 million members and is growing fast. It’s ability to provide professionals around the world with a branding platform has helped make it the single biggest professional social network that has ever existed. Read our 125 LinkedIn Job Search Tips for more help on harnessing the power of LinkedIn and your networks.
3. Become the Product
Think of yourself as a product. Think about how you can pitch yourself to the job market. As a product, you want to convince potential ‘buyers’, or employers, that there’s something about you that can solve their problem or meet a need they have.
4. Seek Out Opportunities
The market today is about talented people seeking out the opportunities that exist in employment. Personal branding allows us to put ourselves in front of opportunities instead of just expecting them to magically come to us. An old definition of luck is that it is when opportunity meets preparation.
5. Be Authentic
Look at how you can project the authentic you. Do not fabricate your background or experience or do something that’s unauthentic to you. Start with the things that you know and build your brand out from there.
6. Highlight Your Uniqueness
Add the uniqueness of your DNA to the rest of your brand, which will consist of your background so far and your education and qualifications. List the roles and brands you’ve worked in on your CV.
7. Tell Your Story
Look at how you can pull your past into your personal brand so that you can project the whole of yourself and what you have to offer on to potential employers. This can be very hard to do because it’s very hard for us to articulate the life experiences we’ve had, so give it a lot of thought. By putting in this time and effort, when you tell your story to other people they are going to open their eyes wide and really listen.
8. Build Relationships
Look around at who you are able to get to know in your sector who may be of help to your career change. Networking and building authentic relationships is not just about projecting yourself onto people, you’re also there to give to others by asking how you can help them.
9. Look to the Future
So much of what people do in personal branding is about our future path. What you have to do is to identify where exactly you want your new career to go. To get to where you want to be, you have to credentialise yourself to people in your industry to show you have the capability to operate at that level. We have to show we’re capable of what we’re going to do tomorrow based on what we’re doing today.
10. Sell Yourself
Don’t hold back in selling yourself to employers; go for it. Just like the company is trying to sell its products and services to customers, all you’re doing is trying to sell yourself to the company. The least we can do is to do our best at selling ourselves to employers. If you sell yourself in a mindful way and professional way it will make you feel that you’ve done the best you can.
By Simon North, Founder of Position Ignition (www.positionignition.com) and the Career Ignition Club (www.careerignitionclub.com), the UK’s leading career change and career development company and platform. He is also the author of 125 LinkedIn Job Search Tips (http://www.positionignition.com/100-linkedin-job-search-tips). Follow him @PosIgnition for more help with your career challenges.