I recently watched Jillian Michael’s interview with Tara Mohr, author of “10 Rules for Brilliant Women“. During the interview they discussed the speech mistakes that we unconsciously make during interviews, and during our everday professional life, that can damage our careers. Tara Mohr is renowned for her self-help advice, she has been featured on: Big Think, CNN, Forbes, Huffington Post, Today Show, International Business Times, and USA Today. Continue reading
Check out this great blog on how thinking like a designer leads to business success. This article breaks down the very interesting relationship between design and business. Have you ever thought that design could impact your business strategy or organization structure. The way that design can spark innovation is they same way it can impact how you make decisions and evolve as a company. This article definitely has inspired be to try breaking away from the way I normally work and take more of a “design” perspective.
“Look job, it’s not you, it’s me. I don’t think we’re as compatible as I once thought.”
I don’t think I have read an article that explains the relationship with one’s career better than this one. Kayla Cruz does an excellent job explaining why sometimes you need to leave your job to be happy; in the same way you sometimes need to walk away from an unhealthy relationship with your boyfriend/girlfriend.
My favorite aspect of this article is that it is very positive. Not finding your dream job right away is not a bad thing, it is just one stop on your career path. Kayla states that “It’s okay if you graduate and your first ‘dream job’ turns out to be an epic fail. CONGRATS! You’re one step closer to finding something you DO like…So don’t be afraid to acknowledge that what you’re doing isn’t the right fit for you and that you need something different. It doesn’t make YOU a failure.”
No matter where you are in your career, I recommend reading this article.
Love, love, love this blog post! “Work Lessons From the Hunger Games”
Find out how the following rules will help you to survive at work and “win” your dream career.
- Get people to like you, or you’ll die
- Be yourself so that people like you so you don’t die
- Be memorable or you’ll die
- Some people will like your guts but others won’t
- A good mentor will help increase your chances of survival
I definitely recommend checking it out!
So what is a Klout score and why should you care?
Klout.com is becoming one of the most popular sites for understanding and growing your online network successfully. Klout was created to measure and understand, as well as leverage your brand’s influence online.
A recent article on Forbes.com by Dorie Clark breaks down why your Klout score is important for your brand. It also includes great tips from Alex Lightman, a high ranking Klout member, on how to increase your score.
Your brand’s online influence can not truly be measured solely by the number of Twitter followers or likes on Facebook you have. True influence (Klout) is measured by the content you share and how frequently you interact with your community, as well how often they interact with you. Klout has created a process to convert your brand’s online influence into a number on a scale of 1 – 100. Some of the factors that influence your Klout score are:
- Twitter: Retweets and Mentions
- Facebook: Comments, Wall-Posts, Likes
- LinkedIn: Comments, Likes
- Foursquare: Tips, To-Do’s, Done
- Google+: Comments, Reshares, +1
Even though the list above mentions “likes” and posts, Klout is not measuring your level of “activity” it is measuring your level of influence!
My favorite feature on Klout is the “Klout Style” report. The report measures:
- Whether you share or create content
- If the information you share is focused or broad
- If you are more of a listener or if you participate in online conversations
- Who you influence and who influences you
Based on these factors and more, your brand is categorized into one of 16 categories, including:
For example, Klout categorizes me as a Networker. Klout defines a Networker as:
Have you already signed up for Klout? If so, where you surprised by your score or how Klout categorized you? Leave a comment below, I always appreciate your thoughts.
Check out this great infographic below on 9 ways to create your personal branding strategy.
You can’t just create a LinkedIn profile and hope for the best, a lot of thought and work goes into creating and maintaining a personal brand. When creating your personal brand strategy, you need to determine who you are versus how you want to be perceived, or more who you want to become. Changing that party image to one of professionalism and experience. A few tips are:
- Define who you are
- Set specific goals
- Be original, don’t just be your job title
- Connect with those in your industry, create a network
- Start conversations and monitor your online personal brand
I recently read a very interesting article in Inc. magazine by Paul Schoemaker; 6 Habits of True Strategic Thinkers
The article focused on the six things that strategic company leaders do well.
- Anticipate upcoming changes in your industry by looking beyond your current business strategy and expanding your external networks.
- Think Critically when faced with a problem. Question everything to determine the root cause, so the same issue does not recur. Challenge current belief; do not assume that all management or business fads will work for your business. Look beyond the fad and understand the entire impact of a change.
- Interpret all the data available when making a decision. There is so much information available at our finger tips today, use it to find patterns and test hypothesis. By doing this, you will decrease any associated risk when a final decision is made.
- Decide where you stand on an issue and hold your ground. Develop a system that works for you for making decisions. Even if you are not 100% sure about your decision, be vocal about how you feel about an issue. Don’t sit on the sidelines.
- Align your goals with those that you work with. Try to learn what motivates the others on your team and bring the uncomfortable issues to the forefront to discuss. By doing this you will open up a dialogue for new ideas and build trust between team members.
- Learn from your mistakes. This is a simple lesson that we have been taught since childhood. Do not ignore or pass the blame when a mistake happens, because no matter how perfect you are mistakes will happen. The most important thing is how you, as a leader, respond to a mistake. When a mistake happens, ask your team for an honest debrief of the situation from their perspective to better understand why things went wrong. If you are in the middle of a project and you feel that the current course of action is wrong, speak up right away to shift the focus of the project in a new direction. Do not wait and hope the current path ends up “okay”.
Check out the full article on Inc.com to learn more about how to become a better strategic leader.
- The Five Traits that Motivate People to Support a Strategic Decision (successful-blog.com)
- How to Develop 5 Critical Thinking Types (forbes.com)
There are many social media platforms to join and watch this year. However, there is one new platform that is getting a lot of buzz and is very intriguing, it is called Newsle.
Newsle is a web app that finds and sends you articles in the news about you, your friends, and anyone that interests you, as soon as they are published (at least within a couple of hours of time of publication). Newsle searches through every major news source and blog published online, as well as many of the smaller ones.
I had one big question when I found this new site. “How do they know if an article is actually about me?”
Well, their search algorithm is very sophisticated; it can determine whether or not the person you asked it to search for is actually the person mentioned in an article. How it works exactly is a secret, but I am quite impressed either way.
A feature I really like, is that you can import both your Facebook and LinkedIn contacts. This feature is important because typically one’s Facebook community is much different from their community of LinkedIn connections. Also, I am personally more interested to know when someone I am connected to on LinkedIn is mentioned in the news, than when one of my Facebook friends is. Newsle is a great tool to stay informed about what is going on in your industry, without actually having to dig through the all the articles published online everyday. I also imagine that people interested in sports and/or participate in fantasy sports leagues would be very interested in signing up for Newsle to keep track of their favorite teams and players.
Above all, this new platform is a great way to monitor your personal brand, or your company’s brand. Google Alerts has been my monitoring tool of choice for a while now, but I tend to receive many results that are not relevant. With Newsle’s algorithm, the list of stories I receive is much more pertinent. Because of this, Newsle is a great tool to monitor your online reputation. I would definitely recommend this platform for college seniors looking for jobs. Find out what your future employer might see about you in a Google search, before they even get your resume.
Newsle Homepage Layout
Similar to what we are used to seeing on the Facebook and Twitter homepages, the Newsle homepage features a feed of the newest articles about those you follow. There are two feeds on the homepage, one for your friends and the other for public figures. In the public figures feed, you can choose to filter your feed by the public figures you chose to follow or today’s top people in the news.
To find out who is getting the most results right now, check out the Trending People list in the right hand column. It is an easy way to see if you missed any of today’s BIG stories.
Personal Newsle Profile Page
When I went to my Newsle profile for the first time, I noticed that I was able to choose the URL of my personal page. I really like this feature, because it will be easy to share my profile in the future. (A combination of a dozen or so letters and numbers does not make for easy sharing) When creating a unique URL for a social media profile, I recommend staying consistent and straight to the point. For example, my Twitter handle is @brianna5mith so to maintain consistency I try to use the same wording in my social media URLs. Therefore, I made my Newsle public profile URL http://newsle.com/brianna5mith. (This is just a small personal branding tip; you do not have to set up your personal URL this way)
Here is a screen shot of what my personal profile looks like. Unfortunately, there are not any recent news articles out there about me so it looks a little empty. However, I do like the robot that fills up the empty space. (particularly neat touch)
Since my page is not terribly exciting to look at right now, I thought I would share the Newsle profile page of a local New Orleanian, Fleurty Girl Lauren Thom. Below is a screen shot of her Newsle profile. Lauren’s page is a excellent example of what this platform can do.
When visiting someone’s personal Newsle profile, you can do many things:
- Check out all the recent articles about them and/or their company.
- See their most recent Tweets using the right hand column Twitter feed.
- Choose to follow them on Newsle
- Sign up for email alerts for when new articles are found.
- Submit articles about them that are not currently listed.
Other Newsle Features
If there is an article about someone that you do like, you can share it on Facebook or Tweet it right from his or her profile. There is also an option to tell Newsle if an article is about the right person, or if the search got it wrong.
You have may have noticed a blue circle with a number and the words Fame Factor on both the profile pictures. Lauren’s circle has the #28, while my profile only shows the #0. Fame Factor is a scale Newsle created to rank a person’s prominence in the news, on the scale of 0-100.
If you are curious about what is out there about you on the internet, or if you want an easy way to follow you favorite celebrities, authors, etc., I highly recommend checking out this new site. This is definitely a website to watch in 2012.
- Tracking People in the News with Newsle (semanticweb.com)
- 4 Social Media Platforms to Watch in 2012 (beingyourbrand.com)
- Tech Round Up: Newsle Gets Better, Facebook Does Not (mediabistro.com)
I came across the infographic below (posted by Mashable) on generation Y women in the workplace. Generation Y (also known as Millennials) is composed of those born between the later 1970’s and the early 1990’s. As it is, I happen to be part of the Y generation.
Some of the facts that I was not surprised by were, Gen Y women:
- Use Facebook for personal usage rather than professional uses.
- Are more familiar with social media sites, and tend to log onto them every day.
- Have the most positive outlook for women in the workplace, compared to other generations.
- Work-life balance is the most important career factor. This does not surprise me since this is something very important to me. I think gen Y women are aware that to be happy one must be fulfilled not only in their career but also in their home/personal life.
Here are some of the takeaways that I found most interesting:
- Even though we have a more positive outlook, we still are less likely to speak up then our male counterparts and feel underpaid (more than other generations).
- Almost half of gen Y women lack a clear career path. This surprises me since there is so much information and many tools on the internet about defining and managing your career goals.
- That only 50% of gen Y women (ages 25-29) have children. This seems surprising, because growing up we were under the assumption that you go to college, get a job, get married, and have children, in that order. You are never really told that there are gaps in-between, during which you are building your career and/or married but do not yet have children.
Oh, and between 1997 – 2011 the number of women-owned firms increased by 50%. Not surprising, we like to be the boss!
Your online reputation can make or break your personal brand strategy. In order to maintain your online reputation, regularly scheduled monitoring is necessary to keep track of what information about you is out there on the internet. While you can control what is on your personal online profiles (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc), you can’t always control the information others post (whether it is true or false).
I recently found a new site called BrandYourself that allows you to manage your online reputation and personal Google rankings. This site can help you manage an SEO campaign for your personal brand.
Their services are free, though you can pay a fee to upgrade to access additional monitoring features. To start off, I think that the features you get with your free account are sufficient though this may depend on what you want to achieve and the current state of your online reputation.
How it Works
For each step in the monitoring process, the site gives you a score and suggestions on how to improve.
- They pull the first ten Google search results corresponding with your name. You then categorize each result as positive, negative, or not me. They provide tips on how to bury negative results through a process of getting your positive results to rank higher than negative listings.
- Submit positive links about yourself, such as your LinkedIn profile. (Only 3 link submissions allowed for non paying users) Once you submit the links, they give tips on how to better optimize the links to appear in search results, how to cross link your profiles, and how to boost your social media profiles so that they will show up in searches. Each link is then tracked to see it how it performs in search results over the next few weeks.
- Create a BrandYourself profile, which is automatically Search Engine Optimized (SEO’d) to rank high for your name and increase rankings for your submitted links. Check out my BrandYourself profile to see what they look like http://briannasmith.brandyourself.com/
- You can earn badges for having positive search results, having no negative search results, burying search results not about you, boosting a positive search result to the #1 spot in searches, and more.
- You are notified whenever someone visits your BrandYourself profile page and when the search ranking changes for one of your submitted links or listings.
I have just started using this online reputation management tool myself, so I am still in the trial stage. But, so far I really like the features that the free membership offers and can see why upgrading would be beneficial as well. This is a one stop shop for managing your online reputation that I recommend checking out.
For more on Personal Branding, check out my other articles: