Personal branding for career success
Personal branding for career success

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Free course

Personal branding for career success

4 What do employers say about personal branding?

Professional services company PwC takes personal branding seriously. It runs online courses and sessions for students, and has created this short video:

Video 3 Aspire to lead: career advice - develop your own personal brand
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).

While employers won’t always refer to it as your ‘personal brand’ they are keen to gain a clear impression about you and your abilities quickly. If you can make yourself standout from all the other people they are assessing in a short space of time, they will be impressed.

A clear, targeted personal brand will demonstrate to them that you have spent time considering their needs and how you can align with and support them, and they will be grateful that they don’t have to waste time trying to figure you out!

Social media

Personal branding is often linked to social media, and employers regularly look at our social media presence as part of their evaluation.

Jobvite’s 2016 Recruiter Nation Report surveyed 1600 human resources professionals across several industries and presented the following data about their use of different social media platforms to evaluate candidates when hiring:

Table 1 Use of different social media platforms

LinkedIn 87%
Facebook43%
Twitter22%
Blogs11%
Instagram8%
YouTube6%
Snapchat3%

Clearly, when you start to raise your profile with colleagues, peers and potential employers, it makes sense to consider your digital footprint, i.e. the information about you that exists because of your online activity. Next week, you’ll look at how to tidy your digital footprint before starting to raise your profile.

Personal branding for existing employees

Employers aren’t just interested in assessing the personal brand of job applicants, they are increasingly focused on helping existing employees to develop theirs.

Homayun (2016) shares eight tips for enhancing your brand in the workplace. If your employer is supportive, they might be able to facilitate some of these ideas:

  • Network over lunch – invite a colleague to join you for lunch and find out what they do
  • Help others – look for opportunities to offer your help, perhaps over coffee with a colleague
  • Write a thank you note to someone who you appreciate, e.g. an office assistant
  • Start a book club – select industry-specific or general business books that will appeal to all
  • Ask intelligent questions – do some homework before meetings and showcase your understanding
  • Get involved in a new project – aim to contribute outside your normal working hours
  • Be charismatic – think about your body language
  • Be noticed for the right reasons – don’t be late to meetings or work on your laptop throughout when you get there.

Activity 4 Being noticed for the wrong reasons

Timing: Allow about 5 minutes

Think about someone at work who has a work-related habit that annoys or frustrates you. It might be that they are constantly playing with their phone during meetings or focus on only one topic that they repeatedly bring up regardless of relevance.

Consider how that affects your opinion of them. Do others share your frustration?

Discussion

We have all had colleagues who are nice people and good at their jobs, but who become annoying or irritating in certain contexts. It doesn’t always mean that we can’t have a productive working relationship with them, but it does affect our opinion of them and our desire to work with them more than we have to.

If they knew that a particular attitude or approach they were using was damaging their personal brand, maybe they would change it. Do you have any annoying habits that might impact on how your personal brand is perceived?

So, you’ve considered how employers might value and promote personal branding, but what happens when that personal brand isn’t as positive as you might like?

PB_1

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to University-level study, we offer two introductory routes to our qualifications. You could either choose to start with an Access module, or a module which allows you to count your previous learning towards an Open University qualification. Read our guide on Where to take your learning next for more information.

Not ready for formal University study? Then browse over 1000 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus371