All of the self-reflection, goal setting and career clarity that you’ve worked on won’t mean much if you can’t put that into words. People want to hear and see what you have to offer. Your value proposition is the presentation of the value you can provide to an employer or colleague.
An effective Value Proposition requires clarity on your desired opportunity, a well-crafted Resumé, a rehearsed “sound bite” for employers and contacts, and a reputable social media presence.
All of these concepts will be explained in greater detail and by the end of this Career Gear tool, you will be ready to work on your Value Proposition.
Since you have determined your career goals, researched the labour market, know the job requirements and identified areas where you need additional experience/education/training, it is time to start the job search and seek out a “port of entry” to your career goal.
Your goal may be to become the Director of Marketing for a medium to large size company. If you do not yet have the required experience or education to attain this goal, your first task will be to define an opportunity that will help you move closer to this goal.
Write down your answers to the following questions:
Your answers to these questions will outline your desired opportunity. For example:
Your desired opportunity statement will be useful in many ways during your application process. The statement can act as the introduction to your cover letter or resumé, or you can put it in your email greeting for your first message to a potential employer. Alternatively, it may also serve as content when you are creating your personal sound bite, which will be discussed later.
Having a polished resumé is essential. Networking will get you the contacts and your resume will get you in the door!
Your resumé will need continuous tweaking and tailoring to specific jobs, so it’s important to get everything down that you think is valuable and continually modify it to speak directly to the job you are applying for. Careful editing shows, and employers will notice.
To get started, here a few essentials to successfully creating your resumé.
It is important to recognize that you can be capable without experience. Experience is built on capabilities, and experience has to start from somewhere. In your resumé, we looked at outlining your experiences and highlighting those that are relevant to your job search.
In this section we narrow in on your capabilities. What are you capable of? How can you help an organization? Doing so allows you to emphasize the specific skills and experiences that are aligned with the desired job description.
If you are a new grad with little or no job experience, your resumé will be very similar to your co-applicants. It will therefore be the quality, and impact, of your cover letter that sets you apart.
The ideal location to list your capabilities is within your cover letter. Your cover letter details why you’re the right fit for a job/opportunity.
Much like creating a targeted resumé, begin by listing what the employer is looking for and then describe how your skills/experience meet this criteria. You may choose to do so with bulleted points or in paragraph form. If you opt for the paragraph option, be as concise as possible.
Also known as an elevator pitch, your sound bite serves as a short 30 second summary of who you are and what you can offer. This will come in handy in both interviews and networking opportunities. Building your sound bite also really helps you zero in on your profile and goals. It should have three components to it. 1)who you are 2) what you do and 3) what you’re looking for. Keep the tone of your sound bite conversational so it sounds natural.
The example above is short and sweet but if you know your audience, you may wish to add in what you can do for their team/organization.
Remember, keep the language simple. It should be easy to remember. The person you’re providing the pitch to might be relaying it to someone else. There is a saying that getting a job is all about who you know. While this can be true, it can also be about someone who knows someone you know. Practicing your pitch/sound bite is important because you never know where your next lead will come from.
Nowhere is your brand more apparent and accessible than on social media. It can be very valuable, but also has the potential to be severely damaging. Social media provides a glimpse into who you are, before ever having met you.
Carefully selecting what you post and knowing what not to post is critical. Employers will absolutely look you up.
Here are some tips to increase your chances of landing a job;