Whether it’s for a job interview, a sales pitch or a networking event, selling yourself is a necessary skill to perfect. College is the perfect time to learn and polish this skill. Here are some basic ideas to consider when creating your personal brand:
1) Do your research: It is vital to know your audience. Whether it’s a potential employer or a valuable contact you’re trying to connect with, you have to know exactly who you’re talking to. For example, when preparing for an interview, know and understand what the company does and how they do it. Know who is going to be interviewing you and how they fit into that process so you can better explain to them why you would fit in as well.
2) Create a self-value proposition: From your research and a solid understanding of your own capabilities, figure out exactly what sets you apart from your competition. You must know what set of skills or experiences put you in a unique position for success. Maybe you have a distinctive major and minor combination, or maybe you had a particularly memorable learning experience abroad or during an internship. Find what sets you apart and let people know why that would benefit their company or organization.
3) Show, don’t tell: Have specific examples and anecdotes that demonstrate your skills. Anyone can say they’re good at speaking Spanish, but telling the story of the time you got lost in Barcelona and had to get directions from someone who didn’t speak English is much more interesting and memorable.
4) Have energy: It seems fairly straightforward, but you have to consciously remember to be excited and enthusiastic. That’s the kind of employee or colleague any person would want. If you’re passionate about them they’re more likely to be passionate about you.