Tactics can win a battle, but strategy wins the war. As you consider your career branding or job search efforts, it is important to separate the two. Career Branding should be strategic while job search is often more tactical.
Too often people in business (and job search) get very anxious for results. The reasoning is simple. There is always short term pressure for results. So how do you avoid this pitfall and stay focused on a strategy?
Let’s look at two opposite perspectives. Actions to lose, contrasted with actions to win.
1) Some of the actions that will help you lose “the war” (and job search tactics to avoid):
- Proceeding without a plan (rewriting your resume every day or week should be avoided.)
- Not having clear goals (Waiting to see what’s out there for you will lead to failure.)
- Following the herd and easy path (Focus on job boards and waiting for the perfect job listing is a fools game.)
- Submitting resumes online (Almost always required, it will almost never get you an interview or job.)
- Positioning as a generalist (The workplace is looking for specialists, not generalists.)
2) So conversely what actions help you win?
Try a know, know strategy
Know what you want. Know how you plan to go get it.
At what level you enter the paradigm is up to you.
If you are working on a high level personal branding goal, define your stated goal and work backward?
What do you want your brand to resonate: world class expert, thought leader, a results oriented manager or a quality technology salesperson?
Once you’ve defined this, you can begin assessing and executing against your know-know strategy.
- Know your marketplace (industry)
- Know the positioning of others with in the marketplace (competing company strategies)
- Know the issues facing companies or hiring managers (pains, current and future)
- Know how you can bring insight and a better future state (your view, your value proposition and your differentiated state)
- Know how you can best articulate and reinforce your knowledge and points (your messaging)
- Know your daily, weekly and monthly plan to execute everything above.
Know what you want. Know how you plan to get it.
Or expect the undesired no-no.
No personal brand and, potentially, no job.