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f you’re looking for a job, maintaining the
best personal brand possible is becoming
increasingly important, and involves being
proactive online and offline. Your personal
brand now spans your presence on social media,
your relationships with past employers, your work
network and your personal networks, including how
you work with recruiters.
Harnessing your personal brand will help you
demonstrate what you have to offer an employer
long before you meet a recruitment consultant
or potential new boss in person. It is therefore
imperative that you take control and actively create
and manage your personal brand.
First conduct a ‘brand review’ by listing the
words you believe people use to describe you.
These can be good and bad characteristics. Put
some thought into identifying habits you want to
break and new skills you want to develop.
Secondly, create and maintain a LinkedIn profile
and be active in endorsing skills and asking others
to endorse your skills or provide recommendations.
Join online groups relevant to your industry or
profession and follow industry leaders on Twitter.
Better yet, start an industry-related Twitter feed or
blog to share useful insights and links.
Maintaining your online profile is a vital part
of career management. But it’s not just a powerful
tool when you’re looking for a new job. It’s also an
essential way to enhance your reputation: crucial
These days, impressing a prospective
employer is about much more than
just what is on your resume. Here,
Jane McNeill, director of recruitment
consultants Hays, explores how to
develop a positive personal brand
and avoid the potential pitfalls of
social media. words Jane McNeill
when more employers search social networks for
insights into the candidates they’re considering.
When building and managing your online
profile avoid the potential pitfalls of social
media by being smart and careful. It’s important
to always be consistent and align your online
profile and activities with the positive personal
brand you want to project, because you’re visible
across many channels.
For example, if you’re frustrated or bored
at work then think twice before venting your
feelings about your workplace or boss on
social media. Posting comments on social media
sites about your dissatisfaction at work could
lead to serious consequences, and may even
result in your dismissal.
In today’s social media age, saying something
derogatory about your employer on Twitter or
Instagram using hashtags such as #boredatwork,
#hatemyjob or #hatemyboss will damage your
brand. Social media has become so ubiquitous that
tweets or Facebook posts can be linked quickly, so
employees can no longer claim they did not know
their posts could be seen by others.
In fact, as many employers will actively search
social media during the recruiting process of
a potential candidate, evidence of such behaviour
may prevent a hiring. Failure to be aware of your
digital footprint is a huge mistake in today’s market.
Next, be sure to stay in touch with former
employers because they can act as referees. Remain
respectful of people’s time but provide updates
about your skills and level of responsibilities where
appropriate, and congratulate others on their career
wins. You never know who will be in a position to
hire or recommend you.
Fourthly, make the best use of recruitment
consultants because they can help you promote
your personal brand to employers and are a great
source of information about employment and
salary trends (and, of course, the details of any job
they put you forward for). They understand the
importance of social media and can advise you on
your online profile so that you can make a good
impression on a prospective employer.
Our final piece of advice is to make time for
networking online and in person. Continue to
update your LinkedIn profile and update any
other social media you have created. At least once
a month make time for a coffee or chat with
someone who can help your career, including
recruitment consultants who know your personal
brand values, as they will remember you when
the relevant roles come along. Even when you are
in a job, it pays to keep valuable contacts fresh.
To build and manage the positive online
profile your ambitions deserve, there are two
golden rules: be smart and be careful.
For more career advice, visit hays.com.au.
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