The value of your internal estate

When writing a personal presentation you have to somehow create value around the total lifelong learning and experiences you have collected. This is particularly true when writing résumés and personal letters when looking for work. So how do you compress your personality, your training and your past experience onto two pages, and how do you get the person on the other side to actually read it?

Well, if I knew that I would not currently be in the very position of having to do that, but having done extensive research on the matter I have made a few observations that I now try to follow…

  1. It is all about the future
    • Telling all about your past experience and results will not make anyone impressed. The person reading wants to know what you will bring to them and feel that you have passion and a game plan to make that happen.
  2. Think like a spy
    • Everything you put into your application pack has to be based on the basis of “need to know”. Focus on what the prospective employer needs and build your application around that.
  3. Do your research
    • Don’t just see who you know on Linked In that could help. Learn all about the company. Find out what kind of person will fit in the group, and if that is you, describe yourself as such. For example, if the company lists social responsibility as one of their core values you should mention any experience of voluntary work.

If, like me, you don’t like picking up the phone to a prospective employer, try to think what you as a person can do in a wider strategy to get noticed. A few of the options open to try are blog, a video or a digital CV to link to; any medium that will show your personality is good. Remember to portray your true self as that is what they will expect when you get employed. No matter how good you are at adapting you still have to show your true colours…

The biggest obstacle, for me at least, is to hold on to the value of that internal estate when I get turned down, or not selected for an interview. When this happens I have to remind myself that what I carry inside as skills and experience is is valuable, and not let anyone call it bric a brac.

In summary, you have to make the employer see from your application what the future would be like with you as an employee. If anyone has more or better suggestions about getting the attention of recruiters please feel free to share in the comments below J.

Like with most things practice will make perfect so a favourable breeze in cosmos will most likely blow in my direction pretty soon…

Observations about media and marketing

Having a home study day today I decided to start with (after dropping my little one off at School, taking my dog to the vet, tidying the house and talking to my mum) going through FB and reading a fashion magazine I found in the mailbox getting back from the vet. With my newly aquired social media glasses and critichal thinikng this is what I found

  • The girl in the Thomas Sabo ad is far to young to be a viable customer, and therefore one would think not a good ”oh I want to be like her” model for the brand. Even so, I am desperate for the bracelet in the ad. The way it glitters and promises me some measure of glamour in my normal mother of three dog walking life. Why do I still want the product when I hate the ad?
  • Humble bragging is annoying. Like ”I didn’t complete the marathon in the time I wanted, maybe it´s …..” I am pretty sure I have read about this before, but in the context of ”why are women so afraid to seem like they are boasting.” Well I feel I could easily write a few thousand words on the subject of society, patriarchy and women being allowed (yes allowed) to express themselves and their views but I shall refrain. This time. The point of the story is not to play on false modesty to get sympathy or attention.
  • Scientists have shown, that the music we listen to during our teenage years stays with us for the rest of our lives. This is so obvious I won´t bore you with the reasoning behind it as I am sure you knew this already. The question is, why don´t I hear more older music on the radio? I mean if you want to get me into a good mood all you have to do is play some Eurythmics and I am all yours.
  • There is a fine balance between invoking anxiety or pleasure. With X-mas just around the corner I am bombarded with recipies and images of homemade buns and cookies and three course dinners. I like both cooking and baking, but all I see is the message that I need to perform at an even higher standard in the most stressful month of the year. They are not engaging me at all!
  • Inequality of all sorts get the most shares on FB, well, apart from cute animals and people parking a small digger on a lorry without getting out of the drivers seat and competitions and… Well, stories that highlight social injustice should get a lot of shares, but maybe that is just my opinion.

This week we had a workshop in school about social media strategies, learning how to identify target groups by common behaviour or needs rather than age or gender. All very interesting but it makes me wonder where marketing will take us in the future. I am already tired of mesages trying to make me feel certain things, I hate to feel manipulated. So what will work next year or in five years time?

The one message that I hear and read all the time is ”stay true to yourself” (or your business mission). My take on that would be, speak to your followers, customers, supporters like he/she is one of your friends. Not your best friend that you tell all your secrets and rude jokes, but a good friend. One you can rely on but know you can´t push too far. But before you can do that as a business, of course, you have to know who you are, not what you are selling.

However, reading  an article about making active choices about what to eat I find the quote of the day, the qoute of everyday perhaps. ”Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative”.(Oscar Wilde) Just imagine how boring life would be if the world wasn´t constantly changing around us.

// Jeanette

Social Media Frenzie

In English today as I have entered Nonowrimo,  and am attempting to write my 50K novel in English.

Last week we started the second part of our communications course. Finally we are getting the nitty gritty on social media and trends in webb based communications. It seems easy, common sense really, so why do people find it so hard?
There seem to be zillions of DIY books on the subject and almost as many courses, on-line or IRL.  We had a full day lecture from the phenomenal Sarah Bernardt from the bureau Knowit last Monday and got a tour around social media hyperspace that left us dazed and very impressed.

My humble observation so far is that people either find it hard to speak as a person when representing a company because they are brain washed with corporate fancy long words talk, or perhaps they are just failing to connect with the company they work for. Or the other way around.

What stands out so far in this course, on all levels and subjects is that the world is an individual place and people are way to multi-faceted to fit into a simple ”target group”. We invite companies and organizations into our lives based on what added value they can bring to us, or if we associate them with a particular cause that we also support.

I now look at ads and sponsored pages with a new interest. I analyze whether they seem to have tried to add some value to anybody or just desperately want to sell. sell, sell or share this please, begging for my attention instead of earning it. I then look at which ones of my friends like it and try to work out if they really like the product or just found the status update moving, funny or relevant in some way.  As a result I find myself spending much more time by my computer or my smartphone which in turn makes me feel, well not so smart actually. I try to convince myself I do it because I have to know it in order to get a job once I am a qualified Webb communicator.
A nagging voice at the back of my head tells me I will probably be a better and more balanced person to employ if I spent more time doing the things I really care about. Like being with my family, writing novels, sewing and playing with my dogs. Surely you should be able to work with social media without being eaten alive by it!?

Going forwards I am going to be much more restrictive with who I let into my virtual space. All you content producers out there will  have to create some extra special value or I won’t even view your material. I will of course pay careful attention to how the content in my social media flow changes, or not.