What Will Your Career Legacy Be?
by Barbara Safani on Jan 11th, 2010
In 2009, we witnessed the passing of many great icons in entertainment, art, sports, journalism, and politics. And with their passing comes an opportunity to reflect on their unique career brand and the legacy they left. Walter Cronkite, Michael Jackson, Ted Kennedy, Patrick Swayze, Farrah Fawcett…all had strong brands that conjured up certain images in our minds. But strong career brands are not just for the rich and famous.
Each of us has our own career brand and unique value proposition. Perhaps you are a project manager, electrician, web designer, or administrative assistant. Whatever your profession, you have a brand that is defined by the way you solve business problems and do things smarter, faster, or more efficiently than others.
Few people reflect upon their career brand until they are in a job search. And even then, many people are so daunted by the task of looking for employment that they fail to think introspectively about the value they bring to their work. But doing so can mean the difference between a ho-hum resume and interview strategy and a memorable one. If you are struggling with how to articulate the value your work brings to employers, here are some questions to get you thinking about your career brand.
- What are you known for?
- What are you the “go-to-guy” for?
- What was the most difficult project you managed? How did completing this project improve the department you worked in?
- What professional challenges did you face when you accepted each of your positions? How did you overcome these hurdles?
- What would happen if you didn’t do your job properly; what problems would arise?
- What work accomplishment are you most proud of and why?
- What would your supervisor say about you? Your co-workers? Your clients?
- What are your strengths?
- Have you increased sales, decreased costs, or streamlined a process? What were the benefits for your employer?
- Have you received any special awards or recognition for your work?
Don’t wait until it’s too late to define your career brand and professional legacy. Now is a great time to reflect on the past year’s accomplishments and articulate your career brand for 2010.