Your personal brand has a direct impact on your career because it is simply how people perceive you in your work. There are many ways you can develop or build your brand to help drive your power generation career. The key is to focus on how you interact with people wherever you interact with people. One of the most significant ways we interact with people, both socially and professionally today is our web presence. How we present ourselves and interact with others over the internet, on social networking sites like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter all, make an impression on others, and can directly influence our professional reputation and personal brand. Here are three things you can do today to get your web presence working for you and your career in the power industry.
Start With an Updated Profile
When was the last time your social profiles were updated? Are you on LinkedIn? Facebook? Twitter? Do you have fresh and relevant content posted regularly? How is your SEO? Making sure these touchpoints say what you want them to is a critical first step to building a solid brand online. Often old posts or comments can bury the good information and content that will help you stand out from a crowd of candidates. Check what people see when they search for you on the web. Update your resume or work experience on LinkedIn. Make sure you have a recent picture as your profile. Standardize your graphics and backgrounds across your social media accounts so you present yourself in a consistent manner wherever someone will find you.
To that point, make sure there are no discrepancies between what you say about your professional history from site to site. This includes job boards or other websites you have used in the past. Think about your online presence from the perspective of a stranger learning about you for the first time. Any red flags they find this early in the process of getting to know you can be the first impression you leave them with before you even had the opportunity to shake their hand.
Engage with Online Communities
A big part of building your brand online is based on engaging with the online community. Set yourself up for success by establishing yourself as a thought leader and a teacher within your industry. Share high–quality content consistently and engage with groups (on Facebook or LinkedIn for example) to help people learn from your industry experience. By directly engaging with the people you are looking to influence, your reputation immediately benefits from that effort, as long as you remain open to feedback and maintain a respectful discourse with your audience. You never know who is in those groups reading your content. You could be speaking with a future employer.
Check Your References
Your references matter a lot when it comes to your job search. Are there people you have worked closely with who can speak to the quality of your experience; your work effort; or the impact you have had for other companies you’ve worked for? Your advocates are a crucial part of building your personal brand. Just like companies that focus on their brand marketing efforts, in a job search (and even in between job searches), you need to build your brand by influencing how people think of you. That means doing excellent work. Ask for references. Be helpful everywhere. Focus on how you interact with your co–workers. The truth is every person you meet can help you build a bridge. You never know who will help you get where you want to go.