Who are you as a leader? What is at the core of your executive DNA?


The answer to this question is crucial because it will serve as a brand development compass. Don’t try to be anyone else or to ‘guestimate’ what employers might want to hear. Instead, let’s uncover the value your authentic brand delivers. Yes, ultimately we must tie your brand promise to what your target company needs. First, let’s focus on ‘commercializing’ who you truly are as an executive.

1 . Where are you heading?

The first question I pose to my executive clients is simply, “What is your career path?” If we know where you are heading, then we can dive into the Why and What is calling you there.

2. Why?

Why are you interested in this next-level career move? Why does it call you? How will it be more fulfilling than where you are now?

3. What?

What value does your experience offer in this new position and how is it unique?


Authentic Brand Exercise 

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superstarThe job search competition is fierce. There is no way to deny that. All the career gurus are advising you to build your brand, tap into the hidden job market by launching a strategic job search campaign…but, have we failed to divulge you must be a superstar!?

With so many qualified professionals seeking employment, it is not enough that you are competent, smart, and experienced. Nope, it is not. Your self-marketing must pack power, make a memorable impression, and ‘wow’ your prospective employers.

What makes a superstar in the realm of job hunting and career management? A superstar is…

1. A subject Matter Expert (SME) = Know your industry’s ins and outs. Stay abreast of the latest (keep your finger on the pulse), so you offer trending knowledge and competitive skills, which cannot be easily found in someone else, and, certainly, cannot be resisted.

Many professionals become comfy in their zone and don’t seek to acquire new skills or predict what may be needed in the future in order to remain center stage.

2. Confident = No matter how strong your brand or your job search tactics, your inadequacy and insecurity will be perceived. How do you build confidence? Work on being an SME and, yes, believe in your value. Plus, be courageous and brag, promote and flaunt your talent. Moxie anyone?

So many job seekers make the mistake of not tooting their own horn (and those that easily do, often shouldn’t). Know HOW you are brilliant. Ensure you can ’emanate’ your prowess, and, ooh baby, let the world see your glow!

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Part of the Career Collective monthly posts series. “Re-Tooling, Re-Focusing, Organizing, and Spring Cleaning Your Job Search.” Please see end of this post for more advice from other career experts.


Branding yourself was a great idea! You are well aware of your unique value offer; have leveraged it to position yourself as an expert in your field and ‘knockout’ other heavy-weight champions. Great job!

What’s next? To stay current, you must always revisit your personal brand’s core values, ensure the value offer you’ve focused on is still in alignment with your target employer’s fluctuating needs. If it isn’t, you may need to re-brand yourself.

A re-tooling of your personal brand is sometimes necessary in reaction to fluid industry demands—very strategic and smart defense! HOWEVER, a proactive re-brand based on forecasted industry needs and a deep-dive self reassessment –is even smarter!  (That’s offense, baby!)

So, is it time to re-evaluate, clean up, refocus, and polish your personal brand? Get your gloves, dust mops, and brooms…(pen and paper will work too). Continue reading »

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The Resume : From The Employer’s-Eye View

On January 31, 2011, in Career Collective, Featured, by Rosa Elizabeth Vargas

Part of the Career Collective monthly posts series. Job-hunting “Rules” to Break and Outdated Job-Search Tactics. Please visit other blog posts, link provided at the end of this post.  

Old Habits Die Hard

Your resume is in pretty good shape. Isn’t it? You have been perusing professional samples online and you have been reading all the how to’s, when to’s, and don’ts. Well, then why no quality interview calls?

Despite unemployment rate still at 9.1% as of the end of 2010, there ARE opportunities out there. It is tougher, let’s face it, but why? Because your competition is talented and highly qualified. Therefore, you, my friend, have to step up your job-search game and dare to take control of your brand on paper (resume) by not playing it safe but standing out. 

What am I referring to? Applying the old Objective plus Career Chronology to your resume, which you learned in high school isn’t going to cut it anymore. It is now imperative that your resume pop and quickly capture attention. It is vital that it convey value over other candidates who are also extremely qualified. It is crucial that you tell a story about how you rescued the company, department, location, region, initiative, client base, and/or project. How? Survey your career from the employer’s-eye view and promote your exclusivity.Then, you will know how to best write a resume that implicitly tells an unmatched story that hogs the job search spot light. Continue reading »

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