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How To Stay Visible So You Don’t Get Stuck

 

I’m going to make a generalisation here.

Think about whether it might apply to you.

Many people find those type of phrases challenging because they go against everything you were taught and it plays to beliefs you may have picked up as a child along the lines of it being bad to boast and “you shouldn’t blow your own trumpet”.

For some, doing anything where they are visible is like “putting your head above the parapet”.

We’ve learnt to believe we will be shot down.

Here's another perspective

Let’s reframe all of that, because it is not accurate.

It is good in so many ways to tell people how good you are, and there are ways of doing it that aren’t boastful or bragging, or whatever other excuses you give yourself for not doing it.

Here are just 7 of the reasons why it’s beneficial to be able to say how good you are:

 

  1. You get better results in your performance appraisals

  2. You get more job offers from the interviews you attend

  3. You become seen as an expert in your field

  4. You create a reputation as someone who shares and gives

  5. You contribute more and have a wider network

  6. If you’re in business….well, you won’t be if you can’t tell people how good you are

  7. It helps keep you in control of your destiny, whether you’re an employee or the business owner. 

So how DO you get seen (in a good way)

There are so many things we could talk about here and so many ways this conversation could go, so we’re going to have a little meander through some key things you can do.

This might be especially important for your career as we go through this period of pandemic when it might seem like your only window on the world is through the lens of your webcam.

Get in the Zone

Start by getting in the zone of how good you really are.

Take some time to recognise your skills. Yes, all of them. Stop to appreciate the full impact that you have and the difference you make.

There isn’t space to turn this into a full-on training here, but I’ve got two different ways to access this information, both at no cost to you. You’d be mad not to, especially in this uncertain time!

  • My free9 Days to Career Success e-course where you will receive crucial career tools straight into your inbox over 9 days.
  • If you prefer to watch and listen, my brand new three part video series will be available soon. 

Visibility starts at home

Once you’ve looked at one of those two resources, you’ll have a framework to comfortably talk about your skills and the difference you make, with your colleagues, managers, customers and network.

There are other things you can do to raise your profile in your organisation, even when you’re not physically in the same space.

  • Prepare for meetings so that you can contribute your knowledge and express your opinions
  • In online video meetings make sure you get heard. Either click the electronic raise-your-hand tool or physically raise your hand so people can see it on your video and know that you want to contribute.
  • Reach out to people you don’t know that well to take an interest in what they do. Especially if they are working in parts of the business where you want to develop your career.

 Share your expertise

You’ve got loads of experience and expertise in whatever your career or profession is. So why not share it by creating posts on social media.

It’s easy and quick to create a post on most platforms and they don’t have to be huge time-consuming things. Take a look at some of mine on LinkedIn; Dave Cordle and you’ll see a variety styles of post and ways that I stay visible within my profession and to my network.

The thing is, that it’s really comfortable to do because I’m not bragging about anything, not selling anything, just sharing things I think will be useful to my network (in other words, the people who are interested, could benefit from, or are aligned with the things I post about.)

It starts a conversation. That’s all it’s doing at that point. Sometimes we just exchange a few messages, sometimes it leads to an interesting conversation, sometimes it results in opportunities for me, or for the person I’m conversing with. That could be directly between us, or because one of us links the other with someone else in our network.

LinkedIn is the obvious place for career or business stuff, but consider where you’ll best connect with the people you want to connect to. Is it through LinkedIn? Is it on a Facebook page or group (you could set one up just for the purpose)? Or is it on Instagram, Twitter or somewhere else.

Curate Information

You don’t have to be continually writing new content – after all, it does take time. It’s very easy to curate information. You read an article or see something on a news website that’s relevant to you and your audience, and you share it on LinkedIn or elsewhere.

Top tip for doing this: always make sure you read what you’re sharing first (just in case there’s anything in it you don’t want to be associated with), and to put a quick message in there with a question.

Something like:

I just read this article from ######. It got me thinking about how……. What do you think? It’s a 3 minute read“. 

By doing that you encourage people to engage with you.

Have some fun outside your comfort zone

Everything I’ve suggested so far has been about writing things, but there’s so much more you can do. Consider some of these which will increase engagement and raise your profile further:

  • Adding images to your post. They could be stock photos, photos you take on your phone or images you create using some graphics software.
  • Creating video content. It doesn’t have to be professionally produced. Smartphones take perfectly good video. Video content gets much more engagement just now, and a short 2 or three minute video gets across who you are and helps people to start to feel like they know you. Be aware of 
    • Your background: ensure it’s appropriate for you and the image you want to portray
    • Background noise: especially important if you are filming outside. I once did a video whilst on a walk up on Epsom Downs. It was only a couple of minutes and I was really pleased with it…until I looked at it back at home where it was quiet. There was a lot of background wind and traffic noise that made the video unusable.
  • If you want to go a bit further, start blogging, or create a YouTube channel or do some live videos on Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn or elsewhere.

All of those things might be a bit outside your comfort zone right now, so start by doing whatever’s most comfortable and build from there.

Jump on the bandwagon

Following on from the previous point about starting where you’re most comfortable, it could be as simple as starting by looking out for people posting things related to your expertise and interests, and then liking or commenting on them.

I don’t want to overwhelm you, so we’ll leave it there for now. Your action is to pick at least one of these things and commit to doing it this week.

Which one will you pick? Commit to it today by letting me know in the comments below.

If you want a supportive community to do that in, come and join us at The Career Café.

It’s one of my ways of staying visible and providing free value to people like you for your career. 

Have a great week!

Dave

 

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