So, you want a dream job (or maybe just a better job) and it seems out of reach. How can you make yourself the ideal candidate? Begin by controlling how others see (and think about) you. Create a personal brand.
Where should you start? How do you create a personal brand? The same way you create a product brand:
Create Objectives, Goals, Measurements, Timeline, Tactics and Execution Channels – If you know where you want to end up, work backwards from where you are today. What will you need to get there? How will you accomplish this? How will you know it’s working? What will you do when reality doesn’t follow your plan (how and when to adapt)? Give people the ability to learn about you, even when you’re not there. Write a blog, use social media or post your photography/art/creative writing for the world to see.
SWOT – Take an honest (don’t lie to yourself) inventory of you Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. No one is perfect, but there is no need to talk about your shortcomings when you could be working your positives.
Be Truthful and Consistent – Branding is NOT about creating a false narrative but is about accentuating your positives (strengths) while mitigating your negatives (weaknesses). It’s not trickery, it focusing the conversation.
Network – If you want to control how you are perceived, get to work because it is not easy. Networking is an effective way to get in front of influential people, tell your story and take in feedback. Update your resume and website. Attend events, offer to present and volunteer on a non-profit board. Let people see your brand in action.
That sound like a lot of work? It is. But career advancements and overall success is always a lot of work. You have to earn it.