Personal Branding

Personal branding resources for professionals to use for social media, websites, online, speaking engagements. Includes bios, expert articles and copywriting services.

Three Easy Things Every Professional Should Do To Manage Their Online Reputation

When someone Googles you, there are minimal expectations.

Here are three things every professional can do to manage their online reputation:

Check the security and privacy settings on your social media accounts, especially Facebook. For Facebook, on your desktop, click the triangle at the top right hand corner. Choose settings. I suggest reviewing all of the options here, but pay special attention to the Privacy section. Once you’ve gone through this, look at the top of the page again and click the question mark next to the triangle. Choose the Privacy Checkup and Privacy Shortcuts options, and make sure everything is as you want it.

This will help you manage who can see what parts of your profile. Please keep in mind, no matter how tight you feel your privacy settings are, there is always the chance that something you meant for private goes public… screenshots have gotten many people into situations they didn’t mean to be in.

Create a basic LinkedIn profile. For many years LinkedIn was predominantly known as a job search website. It is soooo much more now! It’s the one social media profile every professional is expected to have. It doesn’t have to be as extensive as your resume, but it should highlight who you are and major accomplishments. Think of your LinkedIn profile as “the thing” people will look for before meeting you in real life.

Google yourself. Open a private or incognito window in your browser and Google yourself. Do you like what you see? Are there profiles out there you forgot about? Are there things you need to update with recent accomplishments? If you’re lucky, nothing will come up in this search that you don’t already know about. But, you should be sure there is nothing you need to know about it.

Here are a few ways to search:

  • name only
  • name and city
  • name and state
  • name and company

These are the basic things you can do to manage your online reputation. If you want to go further, there are many ways to build a more robust online presence.

However, not everyone needs to blog, share expert advice, tweet, etc. Think about what you want to accomplish and let that guide where you spend time. I’ll talk more about this in future posts. In the meantime, I hope this helps!

Soft Skills List (and how to use them!)

Soft skills list and how to use them in your resume and professional bio

Soft skills are parts of your personality and work style that are hard to quantify, but are key to success. These are typically the words people use to describe you.

For instance, my colleagues say I’m calm and rational.

My professional bio says, “Towanda’s calm demeanor is priceless in stressful situations. By avoiding panic, she can think strategically and solve problems quickly. She is a reassuring voice that everything will work out.”

See what I did there? I listed the soft skills and I shared how they are helpful.

This is very important when using soft skills in your resume and bio. For instance, lots of people say, “I have great communication skills.”

Unfortunately that doesn’t say much. “Great” is relative.

Now, try this. “Jane uses multiple ways to communicate with her team. Whether it’s a weekly progress report via email, an open door policy, or eating lunch with team members, she ensures the lines of communication remain open. As a result, her team is one of the best performing in the company.”

That is a much stronger statement, adding results for a subjective characteristic.

Now that I’ve shown you how to use your soft skills, here’s a list to get you started. Keep in mind, these are just examples. This is in no way an exhaustive list.

30 Soft Skills For Your Professional Bio and Resume

active listener
calm
creative
critical thinker
curious
deadline driven
energetic
flexible
friendly
inspiring
interpersonal relationships
keen attention to detail
level-headed
logical thinker
motivating
optimistic
organized
patient
persistent
persuasive
pleasant
positive
quick thinker
self-directed/shows initiative
social
strategic
team player
time management
troubleshooter
technology savvy

Good luck! Towanda

Three Things Every Professional Bio Should Do

Your professional bio is a clear and truthful representation of who you are, what you’ve done and the value you provide – both professionally and personally.

Here are three things to remember when writing or reviewing your bio.

Your bio should highlight your personality and achievements. Write in a conversational tone. Think of it this way. When someone reads your bio it should reflect who you would be if they met you in person.

Key accomplishments and accolades are front and center. Include work and volunteer experience, along with education that’s relevant. Include the things that you would talk about if you had to toot your own horn.

Be brief. I know, it is very tempting to include everything you’ve done since childhood. But, the average length for a long bio is less than 500 words (no more than a page). Use these words wisely and focus on the highlights. If you insist on listing everything you’ve done, link to your resume.

Bonus point!

Your bio is not a resume. Your bio is a summary, written in a personable tone. Feel free to use your resume as a reminder of what you’ve accomplished, but everything in your resume is not bio worthy.

Good luck with your bio and if you’d like help writing it, I’d love to talk more.