The LinkedIn Summary Section: The Most Under-Used Professional Connecting Tool

When you created your LinkedIn profile, did you take the time to write a thoughtful summary section? If not, it’s time to go back to LinkedIn and work on your summary. I believe this is the most under-used and potentially the most powerful career-builder and professional networking tool available to all of us. LinkedInIn the summary section, you can describe yourself and your unique value proposition in 2,000 words of well-written prose that will draw the right people into your life, whether it’s an employer, a client, or a strategic partner. The key is that Google will use the search terms in your description to find you when people are looking for someone who offers what makes you unique and valuable. If you are a plumber, your summary might lead off with: As Portland, Maine’s most versatile plumber, I work on large and small jobs, whether in a new condominium or office complex, or a single-family residential office. I work throughout the Portland area in towns such as … [Read more...]

You Can’t Fake Real: Seven Ways to Be Yourself in the Critical First Seven Seconds

“My own self, at my very best, all the time.” — American Youth Foundation pledge When a person first meets you, it takes seven seconds for them to determine whether they are going to like you or not, whether they want to work with you or not, or whether they want to be your friend or not. We are wired in our prehistoric brains to decide whether another person is actually a friend or a foe. So if you are trying to make a good first impression, why not present yourself as the best version of yourself? Here are my seven tips for those critical first seven seconds: Stand up straight: there’s nothing like good posture to announce that you are confident, ready to work, and comfortable with yourself. Smile: a smile is the most inviting facial expression. There is nothing more inviting to another person than a smiling face. Look the person you are meeting in the eyes, with an expression that says, “I care who you are, and I want to learn more about you.” Lean in toward … [Read more...]

Check Your Ego at the Door: How Marketing Can Help You Learn From Your Mistakes

Marketing can be a dubious art sometimes. It can often seem like your marketing and advertising efforts are wasted. John Wanamaker, owner of America’s first big department stores, was famous for saying, “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” He was right, and you may be wondering how this ties in with your ego. It’s because in marketing you may fail. You may try something that is part of the wasteful half of your total budget. You may even fail badly. But the important thing is to learn from it quickly, change your course, and find the 50 percent of marketing that resonates with your target audience. When I started my career in marketing, we didn’t have the benefit of the internet, which is the greatest marketing teacher we could ever dream of. Today we can see patterns of behavior on the web and adjust our company’s website content often. We can see which pages are most popular and which aren’t holding peoples’ attention. We can … [Read more...]

Build Your Network and Increase Your Happiness: Three Tips for Increasing Happiness by Building your Personal Brand

Dr. Oz was on the “Today” show this week talking about what he calls “drive-by” relationships where people merely rely on social media to connect with others. I believe people should use social media as a means to an end, with the end goal being a face-to-face experience. True friendships are founded on personal interaction, not just clicking on Like, Friend, Follow or Connect on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter. If you want people to invest in you, you have to invest in them. Dr. Oz also stated that women, especially, can feel lonely and depressed even if they have tons of friends on social media. I think that’s because people tend to paint a really happy and overly optimistic picture of their lives online whereas in real life, things aren’t always so hunky dory. When you connect face-to-face with another person, your brain receives a boost of serotonin and oxytocin, two chemicals that make you feel good and increase your feelings of optimism and happiness. Interacting through a … [Read more...]