Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 8th 2016 Contents B6
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, November 8, 2016
If you re not familiar with a career
biography, think of it as an article
written about you in "third person,"
for use on a Website or where ever
an article about you might appear.
Your resume plus your career bio
are the foundation for your career
brand marketing and online presence,
positioning your unique promise of
value over your competition.
Today s career biography is not the
stodgy, boring document you may have
seen or used in the past.
Energized with personal branding,
your bio can be an interesting, vibrant
journey through career highlights.
Because your bio brings out your
"softer" skills, it helps generate chem-
istry for who you are, what you re like
to work with, and whether you ll be
a good fit for a company s culture.
For executives, when your candidacy
is making the rounds among decision
makers or within your network, your
career bio may be requested before
Sometimes your resume won t come
into play until later in the interview-
Questions to develop
your career biography.
1: What are three or four defining
moments for you as your career
2: In what ways has your life been
3: How have adversity and challenges
made you stronger and a more valu-
4: What are the two or three most
important lessons you learned along
the way that others could benefit
5: Have you been a hero or mentor to
others at work? How did your men-
toring positively impact the com-
Tactics to move your
career bio from bland
• Capture attention in
the first paragraph.
You can lead with your personal or
leadership brand statement or a snippet
of a recommendation from someone
who recently worked with you. What
others say about your work is the true
measure of your brand. Another idea
that can have great impact is to start
with a relevant quote from an industry
subject matter expert or respected
• Leverage storytelling to support
your brand and make your bio in-
teresting to read.
Build stories around a few major
career accomplishments and incor-
porate your relevant keyword phrases.
Flesh out some of your top contribu-
tions to employers, marking your
career progression. Storytelling con-
jures up the benefits you ll bring to
an organization and helps readers envi-
sion you in the position they re trying
• Include a sneak peek
into your personal life.
Definitely include volunteer work
and serving on Committees and Boards
Volunteerism is a brand touch point.
Your commitment and the way you
give back to your community says a
lot about you.
Wrap it up with a brief nod to those
in your immediate family -- their jobs
and hobbies. Write a little about your
hobbies, a relevant humorous incident,
and/or special activities.
It s okay to show your lighter side
-- the things that would be inappro-
priate in your resume. And your
favorite pastimes can spark interest
from those who share them.
• Format the document for visual
appeal and ease in reading.
Break up long paragraphs into two
or three smaller ones to add more
white space, drawing readers eyes
down the page and compelling them
to read the entire document. One inno-
vative technique is to include several
sub-headings throughout, which is
also an opportunity to build in more
Your career biography
offers value in job
search and beyond.
• Transform your bio into the
"About" page on your blog and/or
• Parts of your bio, along with your
resume, can be incorporated into
your LinkedIn and other online
• Bios are essential introductions
for speaking engagements. When
making a presentation or giving a
speech, give your bio to the intro-
ducer ahead of time.
• You can also encapsulate your full
bio into a tidy one or two para-
graph mini-bio to include when
you guest blog, write articles or
white papers, or publish anything
online or offline.
• Follow up networking events by
sending your bio to people you ve
connected with. It s less formal
than your resume.
Bring all the pieces together in a
career brand biography that backs up
your personal brand and complements
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