Thursday, June 11, 2009

What I’m Hearing…Redefining Yourself

Before I get into my blog post for today, I want to apologize for not having posted in a while! Business activities to successfully navigate these challenging economic seas have kept me going an average of 14 hours a day. And I have found Twitter to be quite fascinating. However, further excuses will only slow down my latest post, so on with the show!

Yesterday I was part of an HR/NY panel discussion on “Overcoming the Fear: Strategies for Success in Today’s Economy.” A good part of the discussion was on personal branding. Do professionals think of themselves as the composite of all their varied skills and experiences, gained through work, volunteering, recreation activities, and the like? Or do we box ourselves into categories: I am a recruiter. I am a trainer.

The consensus among the panelists, as well as the audience, was that in order to be successful, viewing yourself in small tight compartments aren’t going to work. Now or in the future. If you want a job as a trainer, that’s of course OK. However, you may need to repackage yourself to highlight the complementary skill set that an organization needs. Is training moving more towards on-line media? What experiences do you have in this area that you acquired through volunteer work?

A former student of mine, who was heavily focused in recruitment, was recently downsized. After reflection on his experiences, he realized that his skills were as useful in the corporate and non-profit worlds as they are in a university setting – focusing on student enrollments. A whole new world has opened for him by taking the chance to think differently.

It can be scary to think of yourself as something different than what you’ve always been. However, each of us is unique and possess many skills and talents, many of which we probably take for granted. When was the last time you took a personal inventory to determine all the wonderful things you are? Refreshing your résumé after that inward look may result in a whole new series of doors opening for you.

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