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When Personal Trumps Professional

More than a laundry-list type resume, a personal brand speaks to who you are

➔ There’s a lot that a recruiter or hiring manager can tell about you by perusing your resume. For the most part, however, your resume will state facts about you: your former employers, your titles, your education background, etc.

That’s all well and good but none of that tells them about you, the real you, the human you, the person that exists beyond the lines on a resume. We’re talking about the dedication you have, your commitment to the job, your ability work with and/or lead others. Your punctuality. Your dependability. Your reliability. Mix them all together and you get… well, you.

These things don’t fit in a resume

All those intangibles, all those soft skills, they’re all that go into making up your personal brand. Your personal brand isn’t how many years you’ve worked. Your personal brand exhibits how well you work, what you accomplished, and why you would be an asset to the organization.

In short, a personal brand communicates a clear and consistent message about who you are and what you have to offer; what sets you apart from all the other candidates for the job; and what you can do better than anyone else.

Apple doesn’t sell phones, or computers, or tablets. Apple sells innovation, reliability, performance and cutting-edge technology.

As you venture out into the job market to sell yourself, keep in mind what you’re selling. Any company can sell a phone, but only a brand can sell innovation, reliability and performance. What’s more, selling those assets should disarm any ageism claims against you.

So, if that doesn’t fit on your resume, how do you sell your brand? The easiest place to sell you is during the interview. But before that you can promote your personal brand through Facebook, LinikedIn, Twitter and the rest. The rest includes those personal comments made about you by your colleagues, your networking contacts and all the rest of them.

You will probably have to do some soul searching to determine precisely what your personal brand is, but get it right and you’ve vastly improved your chances of landing your next job.


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