Personal branding

While being I Hong Kong I run into a personal brand consultant. Yes, it is a very interesting topic!

When we are looking for a job, we sell our services to a particular type of the customer.
Basically a candidate goes through every step of purchasing process, not by a customer, but by the company.

With your CV, you have to:
Capture the attention
Attract the interest
Create a desire
Call for an action (to hire, of cause; or at least to call for the interview)

The most interesting question is how?
Who you need to be as a product to attract the attention and to create a desire?
In order to be bought a good or a service, must satisfy a particular need in a particular time. In order to answer this question it has to be looked at 1) what can you give 2) what company wants

So, can you give or how to sell yourself?

In order to sell or even brand yourself, you need to follow main market rules:
What you have?
What can you give?
Why you do what you do?

Dor example think of Apple (sorry):
What you have?
Lap top, wich is:
Market average with its specs and high price, but with
Competitive advantages of: 1) great design 2) strong co-integration of hard and soft ware

What can you give?
Apple can provide uniques experience of smooth work and complete stylish look for its owner

Why you do what you do?
Apple thinks different and want to change the way traditional things wor

* it is my personal estimation of the strategy, I have no access to any internal documents of the company neither to its communication materials.

So, in order to create your personal branding and and to answer all 3 questions, you have to analyze yourself and make your own research.

Basically, you cannot customize your offer form one customer to another, you have to go with the same offer and find the customer. Offer can be modified and presented with slightly different competitive advantages, but you cannot learn all new profession, at least during the night.

In order to do so you can use 2 main techniques: market study and service testing. SWAN techniques is very effective for finding your own pluses and minuses.

Market feeling:
Study the field/ industry, where your ambition is, read interviews of people, who work in the industry.
Find what qualities make people, who work in this industry so special; and different from others?
Go for brainstorm and main professional-related stereotypes among both your friends and people who work in this industry. For example: people, who work in advertising persevere to be creative, ambitious, strong. Stereotype don’t show what the life is, but it least, it may give general feeling on the industry.

SWAN is the most powerful tool to analyses one’s personality.
So it would be: Strengths – Weaknesses – Ambitions – Needs
By focusing on the 2 first (strengths and weaknesses), you can:

Write what you think is your strength and weakness
Ask people around you to write what strength and weaknesses you have (the more the better). You can find many many things, which you have never considered before. For example long time ago, I found out that one of my weaknesses is that i speak too fast.
Ask an expert opinion if anything you wrote is anyhow relevant to the field/company, where you want to end up working

Your ambition and needs is what you want to get from your job and what you willing to give up in order to get one.

Keep, following rules of branding, that you can communicate 1-2 main strengths, which you have, not more! And the most difficult thing is to choose!

Why 1 or 2? Because you want to be remembered by a person, who is reading you. A persons memory cannot hold more information. Of cause HR departments are more advanced and more professional in finding the diamonds, but help them, if you want to get hired.

All CV should be inline with the branding strategy, which basally mean highlighting all your actions and achievements in line with the main strengths, which were chosen for the promotion.

Personally I am about to brand my CV, as working in the firld, I believe I must have a beautiful and shiny one, regardless the fact of my employment intrests.

If you are interested in the topic and need some consultation, please feel free to contact me on e-mail. I am interested in creating methodology of personal branding and will be happy to have bigger field for the experiments: