Looking to Elevate Your Personal Brand? Here Are 5 Things You Need to Quit Now

Often career experts talk about what I call the rainbows and butterflies version of having a successful career, but this doesn’t show the complete picture. What usually happens is that the emotional challenges that come with change are treated like a movie extra when in fact it plays a lead role. While I’m all for the “you can do it approach,” I also think we need to address the importance of having the right mindset when it comes to making a career move. You can do everything right on paper but still not make any progress because mental roadblocks are holding you back. Here are some things you must quit if you want to move forward and elevate your personal brand. 1. Ignoring Your Personal Brand   Most people don’t set out to build their personal brand because it’s a fun wishlist item. It’s usually because they want more of something they’re currently not getting enough of—be it money, opportunities, or freedom. Whether you openly accept this fact or begrudge the thought … [Read more...]

Does Your LinkedIn Profile Pass the Seven Second Rule?

You may already know it takes about seven seconds to make a good first impression, but are you considering this rule when it comes to your digital brand? LinkedIn is further putting this to the test with its new design. In case you haven’t noticed, LinkedIn has switched things up again. But this time it’s not just a matter of playing hide-and-go-seek with common features. You may also need to update your profile. A noticeable change impacts the way your Summary displays (or should I say, does not display). Now, anyone who visits your profile will only see a teaser of your Summary. To see your full Summary, your audience will have to click “See more." Otherwise, approximately 90 to 200 characters will show depending on whether your profile is viewed on a mobile application or desktop. Although this concept is new to LinkedIn, it’s used for other platforms. For example, on Forbes, an author's bio is a one-liner, and you have to click a link to read the full bio. (You can see … [Read more...]

Do You Talk Politics on Social Media? Here’s How to Protect Your Brand

Ah, election season. The time of year when you don’t need novelas or water cooler chat for some drama. You can lounge on the couch watching TV and, boom, a perfectly placed commercial slips in ending with “I am so and so, and I approve this message.” (Uh huh, as if it was hard to guess.) Yup, it’s upon us full throttle—and you can’t avoid it. So what do you do when the subject of politics comes up? If you’re at work, you may try to keep your opinions pretty neutral, depending on who’s in the conversation, because you never really know what others think. Yet, even when you talk to friends in a “safe space,” you may realize you have very different views. Throw social media into the mix—where you have even a broader range of opinions—and you learn more about people’s political views than you ever cared to know. There’s nothing wrong with disagreeing on a topic. But let’s face it, differences can make you judge someone—even if you don’t realize it. It’s like when I tell … [Read more...]

Social Branding: 4 Ways to Build Your Brand Beyond LinkedIn

I recently had the pleasure of co-facilitating a webinar with Marie Zimenoff, CEO of Career Thought Leaders where we discussed social branding. In "Building Your Personal Brand (It's More Than LinkedIn!)", we walked career professionals and job seekers through the process of building a strong personal brand using various social media platforms. If I were to sum up the fundamentals of social branding, it would look a little like this equation: Visibility x Consistency x Authenticity = Reach When you reach your target audience (e.g., recruiters, companies, influencers, clients etc.), you connect with them. If you establish a connection, they listen. Then guess what? If people are listening to what you have to say, the mic is in your hands to show them what you’re working with (metaphorically speaking, of course). I love social media because it truly levels the playing field when it comes to getting noticed.  Not only can you find people of interest, they can find you too. … [Read more...]

Do Your LinkedIn Endorsements Reflect Your Personal Brand?

LinkedIn's Endorsements feature is like the extra parts left over after you assemble furniture. Sure, it's a part of your profile, but do you give it much thought? The “Skills & Endorsements” section is supposed to be a way to validate your personal brand. But its credibility is questionable since people can easily endorse connections for skills they have no way of validating. (Quite an oxymoron, if you ask me.) The best way to validate your brand is to add “Recommendations” from people who are willing to take the time to write about your skills and strengths—preferably, not your mother or spouse. Does this mean endorsements are a complete waste a time? Not exactly. We can go back and forth on whether or not it is, but even extra furniture parts come in handy sometimes. Strategic endorsements can emphasize your expertise and optimize your profile with targeted keywords. If you choose to list endorsements on your profile, you might as well use them to your advantage. … [Read more...]