developing an authentic professional profile.

This week I’ve decided to do something a little different. Whilst I have got a LinkedIn account, which I do use, and am starting to use social networks such as Twitter to keep up with the marketing and advertising world as well as for personal purposes, I am by no means a pro when it comes to developing an authentic professional profile. That’s where my friend James Shamsi comes in, a King’s College London graduate who has been featured on Good Morning America and made headlines around the world for putting his résumé on Tinder.

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Before we look into James’ case study, it’s worth looking into what an authentic professional profile is. Employers are now Googling people more than ever and as this infographic below from Mindflash shows, it’s not just our professional social networks that they’re looking into. Mindflash also highlights that 35% of employers found content on social networks that caused them not to hire a candidate, so it’s important to create an authentic, consistent and positive professional profile to act as an effective personal portfolio across a broad range of online media.

So back to James, what makes him stand out? For a start, one of the main things James always does is to link back to his video resume. Whether it be on his Tinder profile, his LinkedIn or even on a Buzzfeed article, James has made sure he has a consistent online profile that is always seamlessly linked back to his video CV. Not only is a video resume a really unique thing to have, it’s also a great way to highlight his achievements in an eye-catching way. Considering that the average time spent reading a CV is just 6.25 seconds, it makes sense to showcase your skills in a different manner. It’s worked for James too – he’s now a Social Media Manager living and working in Los Angeles.

How can we go about doing this ourselves?

This Prezi presentation by David Timis outlines the basic steps on how to brand yourself in the 21st century.

To sum up, make sure you reflect on who you are and what motivates you, exploring your interests and skills in order to find words and phrases that define you. You can then use this to join socio-professional networks such as LinkedIn to connect with groups and companies that interest you and even find employment, ensuring you highlight your successes and specify what you are open to as you go along.

Mindflash, 2011. Social Screening: How Companies Are Using Social Media To Hire & Fire Employees. Available at: https://www.mindflash.com/blog/2011/08/social-screening-how-companies-are-using-social-media-to-hire-fire-employees/ [Accessed 07/11/14]

Shamsi, J. 2014. 12 Reasons to interview me. Available at: http://www.buzzfeed.com/shamzinator/10-reasons-why-you-should-read-my-resume-ntaj [Accessed 07/11/14]

Telegraph Jobs, Does your CV pass the 30 second test? Available at: https://jobs.telegraph.co.uk/article/does-your-cv-pass-the-30-second-test-/ [Accessed 07/11/14]

Timis, D. 2014. Branding Yourself in the 21st Century. Available at: https://prezi.com/po5kk-3zdfts/branding-yourself-in-the-21st-century/ [Accessed 07/11/14]

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5 thoughts on “developing an authentic professional profile.

  1. Having read your blog I further read the article, ‘Guy Puts His Résumé On Tinder To Network And Gets Great Results’. While this came as a complete surprise to me that a professional profile could be presented on a speed-dating app, it was nonetheless fascinating.

    While I understand, this as a means of connecting, I would argue that the development of a professional profile cannot be achieved because of the limiting features of this app. In addition, the key aspects of professional development; ‘interaction’ and ‘engagement’ may be lacking in such a platform. While I would argue that James ‘used’ this speed-dating app as an innovative way to spread his resume, rather than as a platform to develop his professional profile, to ultimately achieve the desired result, a job.

    As a friend of James, to what extend would you agree or disagree with my viewpoint? And what was his motivation/reason for choosing Tinder?

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    • Hi Catherine,

      Thank you for your comment!

      I understand what you mean about Tinder being a limited application in terms of finding employment, but I think in the context of what James did it worked out really well for him. Bearing in mind he moved to Los Angeles where a lot of the kind of start-up companies he wanted to work with are always looking for innovative and different ways of “putting yourself out there”, his idea of putting his CV on Tinder was bound to get attention!

      However, James used Tinder as just one of his many ways to get himself out there and I think that’s what really makes him stand out as someone having an authentic professional online identity, he has a presence on so many networks which are all in sync, so doing something out of the ordinary to set himself apart was probably his motivation for this.

      Sophie

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      • Catherine and Sophie,

        While I agree that putting a CV on Tinder is the type of thing needed to get you noticed, is there a point where you can have ‘too much’ ingenuity? Is it more important to make yourself as searchable and as visible as possible, or would it be more beneficial to concentrate on a few succinct ways to develop an online profile? Quality or quantity?

        Let me know what you think,

        Adam

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  2. Hi Sophie. This is an interesting blog, and the case of the person getting a job through their Tinder profile is an interesting story of how things are changing. Personally though, I think one thing that is always a problem here (in a number of this week’s blogs) is that we’re falling into a bit of a representativeness trap.

    People seem to be pinpointing a lot of individual cases of people getting jobs from unlikely sources due to their blog/Tinder etc., but I think it’s a little difficult to say that this is something that happens regularly, as the fact is it’s still always a story when it happens. That shows that it’s not the most regular of occurrences from the get-go, and the truth is a large majority of jobs are still filled via normal processes.

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  3. Pingback: Topic 3: Reflection | UOSM2033 Living and Working on the Web

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