Image is important when you are job seeking or working. The image you put forth – be it in person, online, or through your work – communicates who you are and how you work.
- When you meet with contacts, turn your phone off and put it away. Need to know the time? Get a watch. It’s impossible to take a covert glance at your phone – it will always look like you are impatient, have better things to do, and are basically ignoring the person you’ve met with.
- Dress appropriately for the position you want and the activity you are engaging in. This might take a bit of research like driving by the office to check out the dress practice before an interview or talking to contacts, but it is well worth it. Dressing appropriately not only sends the right signal, but gives you confidence as well.
- Be ready to take notes. If you are meeting a contact to discuss a target company or your job search, take notes. You won’t remember everything and it shows that you are serious about your search. You should also be ready to take notes in an interview.
- Manage your online image. If you want to use social media very socially, that’s fine as long as you’ve locked it down. Set privacy controls to rock solid and keep up with privacy updates. If you aren’t willing to put that effort into managing your online image, then use it only professionally. Assume the next person to interview you will see any image of you on Facebook, all your Tweets, and any other social media activity. Interact online in a way that would be acceptable for them to view.
- Do your profiles, resume and portfolios look like they belong to someone in the job you want? Keep relevant examples of your work and make them accessible. The keyword here is “relevant.” If you are targeting a marketing job, but all your materials are all customer support work, they won’t do much to show how you can succeed as a marketing manager. If recruiters can see you in action – performing activities relevant to the job you want – through a professional blog, personal website, or on Linked In, you have an advantage.
This article is Part Two of a three-part series. Previously, we talked about knowing the job. Coming up: Conclusion of this three-part series – “Be the Job”.