Creating Your Professional Brand and The Art and Science of Networking

“I'm young, I'm handsome, I'm fast, I'm pretty and can't possibly be beat.”
Muhammad Ali

That’s some brand.  What’s your brand?

Opus College of Business graduate students attended Graduate Business Career Camp, Creating Your Professional Brand and The Art and Science of Networking, last weekend and the hours flew by!

Presenters LaBarre Spence and Tom Colosimo, from UST Graduate Business Career Services, helped students prepare their professional brand and then how to use that personalized statement—aka pitch—to network. Having a confident presence and genuine passion allows you to promote what you do well and how you might meet the prospective employers’ need. First, you must  analyze and organize your competencies, standards and style.

Ask yourself these four questions:

  • What are you known for?
  • What do you want to be known for?
  • What do you do well?
  • What makes you successful at what you do?

As you develop your professional brand statement, keep in mind that “it’s how you want to be perceived” and remember to “include your personal and professional values that are most important to you.”

Preparing your brandis a building block to networking.  The process allows you to analyze your skills and investigate how the workplace is compatible or not with your skills.    LaBarre offered the ultimate brand questions: “When your name is mentioned, what do people think of?  When you meet people, what is their impression of you?  That is your Brand!”

Recommended books:  “Be Your Own Brand”  McNally  and Speak,  “Career Distinction”  Arruda and Dixson.

Why have a brand?  Why have a pitch?  In order to network and to present yourself professionally, you have to prepare and practice.  Being prepared will allow you to relax, listen and respond while networking.  Tom listed where we could use the pitch as there are dozens of professional organizations in the Twin Cities, and how to tailor the pitch for casual introductions VS formal interactions, such as interviewing. To prepare for a successful career, now is the time to network!

For more information, visit Graduate Business Career Services.