Archive for the ‘resume’ Tag

How Effective is Your Personal Brand?   Leave a comment

A cubicle neighbor – brainwashed

Mind Share, Customer Awareness, Top of Mind Whatever You Call It – Who Knows You?

Like a lot of folks, I work in a cubicle office space. One of my cubicle neighbors has an irritating habit of humming, whistling or singing jingles and quoting commercials about athletic shoes, junk food restaurants and car dealerships. This guy is completely brainwashed with these messages, and consciously or unconsciously, spreads his junk knowledge to others around him. I usually tune this audible garbage out by focusing on my work, or putting my USB headset on.

By the way, sometimes I have music on, sometimes I am on a conference call or net meeting, but often I just have the headset on without listening to anything, so people won’t bother me. If you are in a similar noisy situation, you may want to try this “do not disturb” technique. The “commercial guy” is a little less irritating than “the nose whistler,” but that is another story . . . .

In any case, as I tried to ignore this audio pollution and tried to focus on editing a CAD model, I thought about this from a job search point of view. Companies and advertising agencies love people like my office space neighbor: Their messages are always at the top their minds, and their brand images and marketing messages are getting through – and are broadcast to potential customers.

If you are new to the idea of personal branding, consider how long and how much money it took Nike, McDonald’s, Burger King, Toyota, BMW and other companies to establish and achieve their brand recognition. Corporations have money, agencies and time to create, maintain and protect their branding. For the rest of us, our resource is time. And we can leverage the power of LinkedIn to broadcast our personal brand.

Putting this in the form of a question from a hiring manager, recruiter or company headhunter, their thoughts could go like this:

“Who is the best person in my network that can become our new (fill in the blank with a job function or title)?”

The interesting part about this question is that the person selected may or may not be the best qualified or best experienced person in their network. It is more likely to be the very first person they can think of.

And this is where we want to be: All of us should do everything possible to earn that same place in everyone’s head. We want to be the first person people think of when they are seeking advice or trying to fill an opportunity.

While you don’t necessarily need to make up a jingle about yourself, your personal brand must communicate who you are, what you do and why you do what you do in simple, easily-understandable language. As you craft this message, always think about this from the viewer’s point of view – your “elevator speech” is not for you, it is for someone looking for your skills and expertise.

The next step is to edit your personal branding message into language your grandma can understand. You must be able to answer the famous questions, “Why should I hire you?” and “What is it you do here?”

Creating and maintaining your personal brand takes time, and the messages must be consistent and positive. Why not start today and optimize your LinkedIn profile summary with a simple, powerful and memorable personal branding message?

For more posts like this, visit my LinkedIn Publish page – and connect with me on LinkedIn – just remember to personalize your request so I know how you found me.

 

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Re-Invent Your Career with Transferable Skills   Leave a comment

wayne yoshida tech writer screwdriver image

Here’s an example of a re-purposed item. An ordinary Phillips head screwdriver became something new by adding a few bends in its shaft. The bends were transferred from some other screwdriver ideas . . . .

Everyone has a set of skills and expertise, no matter who they are or what they do. Think of your skill set as a collection of things you learned from your earliest memories to present day. This is especially important when contemplating your next career move: All of us can jump from one career or position to another, but the jump must be realistic and make sense to anyone looking at your profile and work history. I call this our inventory of transferable skills.

Take a close look at everything you do and everything you know, including any personal, time-off activities such as sports and hobbies. Make a list of your skills and knowledge, then think about how these elements can transfer into your next career. You may discover more possibilities as you examine your list.

IMG_0764 wayne yoshida Tech Writer

While helping my friend Peter decorate his boat for a Christmas parade, we talked a little bit about work and career events over the last year. Of course, I had to mention LinkedIn and how it helped me. Peter is not on LinkedIn (yet) but I hope he decides to give it a try.

Peter’s extreme Christmas decor aboard his boat includes thousands of individual lights, four microcomputers two generators and hundreds of feet of wires.

Connecting all of these elements together and making them work on a short schedule is a demonstration of Peter’s knowledge and skills. Many, if not all, of these skills are transferable to several career paths.

Here are just some of the skills and expertise needed to create an award-winning Christmas boat entry:

Project planning/project management
Advertising and marketing
Public information/public relations
Computer/microprocessor programming
AC circuitry
Ocean navigation
Electronics
Programmable logic controllers PLC
Electrical safety
Computer software and hardware

The list is impressive, and it is even more impressive when you remember this is just a short list of things based on one hobby-type of activity.

So as this year comes to a close, I encourage everyone to make a list of transferable skills and expertise, and remember to include both work and non-work activities.

Learn more about leveraging LinkedIn as a career management tool at the LinkedIn workshops at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA. If you are out of the area, watch for postings about our live, online sessions. Check the “Calendar & Events” page for dates and times.

Connect with me on LinkedIn and see my other LinkedIn Publish posts.

Colleen Jones Rocks!   Leave a comment

Colleen Jones earned a You Rock Award for her outstanding seminar on “ATS.”

I attended a seminar on ATS at the Orange County (CA) One Stop Center last year. It was the most useful and informative one hour session I attended, and so Colleen Jones gets one of my “You Rock” awards.

<<< Take a look at my LinkedIn update post to see the award >>> 

Wait a second. What’s ATS you say? ATS means “applicant tracking system” – the filter used by companies to find potential employees. An infographic for the ATS is posted on the HireRight blog site. 

I wouldn’t call the resume robots “smart” or “friendly” – but you must create a resume that is smarter and friendlier than the robot scanning your qualifications summary.

Like all weapons in today’s job market, the ATS is a double-edged sword – it can help or hinder companies seeking people to fill job opportunities, and it can help or hinder job-seekers looking for work.

The best advice is to understand what and where the resume robots are looking for – and then fill your resume or curriculum vitae (CV) with what the robots are looking for.

If this sounds a lot like SEO – search engine optimization – it is because it is. Placing the proper key words in all the proper places is what you need to feed the ATS – and get that interview invitation!