Job seeking can be overwhelming. While long-term career decisions take careful consideration, personal branding can be considered a strategic move.
Personal branding is the practice of marketing yourself, your talent(s) and your career as a brand.
Although it may sound difficult at first, creating a personal brand is not as complex as it sounds. Here are five easy steps to develop a personal brand, says the CEO and co-founder of Lulaway, Jake Willis.
KNOW WHO YOU ARE
“List the things you like about your work or the qualification you are pursuing. What is the problem you want to solve? Once you have identified those ask your peers or mentor, how would they describe you; and what makes you stand out? The answers to these questions are a good indicator of who you are,” he explains.
WHAT YOU WANT TO BE KNOWN FOR
“Another way to look at a brand, it is a promise you make, and your skills are the tools that will help you keep that promise. If you cannot tell what skills are the most in-demand in your industry, you may search for job descriptions online—LinkedIn is a good place to start.
FOLLOW THE EXPERTS
“When building your brand, your goal is to stand out, yet you cannot rise to the top without knowing who’s already there,” says Jake. Therefore, he urges young people to research their desired industry and follow the experts: find out if they have blogs, or where they contribute their thinking.
GROW YOUR ONLINE PRESENCE
In this digital age, growing an online presence should be the most important step to consider, as it is your digital manifestation on the online space. Hence job-seekers must ensure that their online presence is appealing to both hiring managers and peers.
ASK FOR RECOMMENDATIONS
Studies show that 90% of people trust recommendations from others. “Ask for recommendations; let others communicate your value,” Jake encourages the youth, before adding, “it is a simple, yet efficient way to showcase yourself without saying a word.”
A brand is not limited to an online presence; it is also the way one carries themself. Building a memorable brand is an ongoing endeavour and demands consistency. Therefore, keeping up with trends is just as important as all the steps above.
In addition to trends, Jake advises young job-seekers to keep their profiles up-to-date, stay in touch with their contacts, and build and maintain their networks.
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