GLBT Job Fair
Employment Without Discrimination, For All
Marketing Yourself Workshop Part A
In The Beginning....
The first step is to identify what you are marketing. In this case you. Of course you have your list of previous employers, job descriptions, educational certificates, etc etc. What do these things say about you, the individual? Your professional and educational qualifications are just that qualifiers, facts. However, to market yourself or anything you must know the facts of course, but also applications, character traits, benefits, dependability, longevity, cost, and need.
Start by taking out a piece of paper and pen. Across the top of the page form columns with these headers; Facts, Applications, Character Traits, Benefits, Dependability, Longevity, Cost, and Need. Under each heading write something about yourself in relationship to employment. In the first line under facts use resume, complete the line. Go to the next line and do it all over again. Keep adding to the list until you run out of answers. This may take a while. You will go farther in some columns than others. When you have finished, read over the information by column. Learn everything on this paper, this is your product, you.
With the information above you will confidently know your product and why it is better than another. The key here is the word confident. If you know your material your confidence will be high. Ok so we are talking about you right? Ever been asked one of those, "What would you do" questions, and you didn't know the answer, when you should have? If you know your material that will happen less. You will be comfortable and confident. A winning combination.
Now you know the product. To market a product you must first establish a need for the product. Then identify the market which has the same need. This is easily done for you by the departments in any classified section of a newspaper. Do not be surprised to find positions for which you are qualified in several departments of the classifieds. Also send your resume to companies which you know have a need for your qualifications. Network with business associates and friends. You will be surprised at some of the best lead sources.
Organization is important to the success of any marketing venture. Use a calendar to keep dates, telephone numbers, any information you may need. And keep it with you and use it. Schedule each day, with personal and employment search times scheduled. Never set an appointment from memory, look it up. Being punctual, and prepared is always impressive. Control your time, don't let it control you.
Set goals for yourself on number of contacts or resumes to make each day. Set goals for number of appointments. Setting a time goal for being employed can be difficult and self defeating. If you have set your goal to be employed by next week, and a position you are applying for isn't making a decision for two weeks, what have you gained? All goals must be realistic and attainable. Instead of putting a time limit on finding a position, set criteria for the position, and set goals pertaining to finding the position. Plan your day, and work your plan.
Body language and personal presentation are very important assets. Neither are dependent on the body perfect, so we all have an equal chance here. The best body language is one which you exude naturally, so this takes practice. There are certain basics; smile, stand up straight, look people in the eye, be open and welcoming, (not to be confused with inviting). At all times be outwardly confident and collected. Well, I admit it, interviews make us all nervous, including the interviewer! So be sure and check out the body language you are seeing and use that information-professionally. A firm handshake is good, not to be mistaken with painful.
Personal presentation also takes practice. Just because you are being interviewed is no reason to loose control. Don't rush answers, it is ok to "take a moment". Practice being a good listener. Imagine the word listen written across your interviewer's face. You will seem and be attentive and better prepared for those questions. Above all be sincere! Don't comment on pictures, decor, or anything personal. You may just compliment something which they don't like. We all have obligatory gifts displayed. This type of flattery is usually fake and very noticeably so. Instead focus on being interested in the position. Small talk is usually pretty obvious, so avoid it. The main pitfall is either oversell or undersell. Be truthful and confident about your abilities. Don't bite off more than you can chew. However, don't be shy about saying what you believe. Avoid statements like "110 %", "My best", "I'll Try" these all either over sell or are excuses for failure. I know that sounds rude, but true. Bottom line... Don't be someone you know you cannot be, what if you get the position?
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