You have to understand, Pamela Slim is a rockstar. She has authored multiple books on careers… she lists her customers as Google, Dell, Harvard, etc. and she is a TED speaker. On Pam’s speaking page there is a section at the bottom titled Crafting the Story of Your Personal Brand. In that section she has these two bullet points:
Creating a full-color, full-contact communication plan
Sharing your story with the world in a way that gets results
Why am I sharing this with you? Because there is a fact that is often-times overlooked: developing your personal brand message is HARD. Even experts, people who live and breath this stuff, find it hard!
Did you know that for 2 years I could not give you a one-liner about JibberJobber? It probably took another year before I could give you a one-liner about myself!
The same reason it is hard for you:
You don’t want to mess this up.
What if you say too much? What if you say too little? We are so complex, how could we possibly put all of our awesomeness in one line??
Sometimes we come up with something really cute, clever, or catchy. That usually has cliche or jargon, which does nothing more than confuse our brand.
Sometimes we get into analysis paralysis, and don’t come up with anything (which is another way to mess up our brand).
As important, you need to understand that our brand statements can and should be FLUID. I’m sure that Pam has half a dozen taglines that she has used over the years…. but “bumbling through” this conference, with this type of audience, at this stage in her company and career, made her rethink each of those taglines she has used.
It’s okay to change your tagline. It’s okay to let your tagline grow with you.
If it’s hard, that means you are thinking about it. Keep thinking… keep trying. If someone like Pamela Slim needs to rework her personal branding statements, and she gets stuck and confused, then please know that this is hard stuff.
Keep working on it, and come up with something that is true to you, and easy for others to understand and communicate!
Diane Darling’s open letter to LinkedIn about this issue is here. She said she hit her quota in 8 days, and then asked LinkedIn to please consider the sensitive budgets that career offices have. I think the only answer for LinkedIn is to remove these limits, and make LinkedIn usable again. This is one of the most disrespectful things that LinkedIn has ever done to their users. I think Diane is right asking for a break, but instead of just representing the career offices, I think she should represent the job seekers, who will undoubtedly get up against these limits too early.
Diane’s workarounds, and my comments:
>> “Google vs. LinkedIn - I’m now suggesting people download their LinkedIn connections so they can use Google to search instead of LinkedIn.”
Actually, there are two suggestions here.
The first is Google vs. LinkedIn, which I address in my post on the work-around. That is, use Google to search on LinkedIn’s database, and not use up any of the quota.
The other thing Diane is suggestion is completely different: download your first degree contacts…! I recommend you do this at least once a year, simply to have a backup of your first degree contacts! You then have the name, title, company name, and email address of each of your contacts as a backup. This can come in handy in a variety of scenarios (like, you get booted out of LinkedIn, or worse, your employer steals your account and the connections).
>> CRM vs. LinkedIn - I’m also teaching people to import Linked Inconnections to a CRM (I suggest Insightly) so they don’t have to go to LinkedIn to look up people (I teach ways to use LinkedIn as a CRM but will have to change that.)
I have been a long-time proponent of having your own CRM, and not using LinkedIn as a CRM. I think that using LinkedIn as a CRM is a bad, bad move. Aside from my observation that it just isn’t a CRM (even though they acquired a CRM startup a few years back), the policies that a social network have to have and enforce are different than the policies needed for a CRM. For example, if you do something against their Terms of Service, like put your email address in your name field (yes, even though people do it, it’s against the rules), would you want your access to LinkedIn (social network + CRM??) to be taken away? Yes, I’ve had people contact me because their LinkedIn account has been disabled for this violation, or other super minor violations, or for things they had no idea were violations.
In other words, if you use LinkedIn as a CRM, be prepared to have problems that have to do with their policy issues.
Furthermore, what if they take away features (like LinkedIn Answers and Events)? Or if they decide to move certain CRM features behind the paywall (like the search limit)? Do you trust LinkedIn enough with your CRM data and functionality that you’ll hope and bet that they won’t disrespect you, as a user?
I certainly recommend you use a different CRM for CRM stuff, and use LinkedIn as a social network (to find others, and to be found by others). I think they are two very different tools with different value propositions.
You might not know, but JibberJobber is technically a CRM. CRM historically stands for Customer Relationship Manager. I like to think of JiberJobber as a Career Relationship Manager. Instead of focusing on sales, we focus on relationships. We focus on helping you network into companies and opportunities.
Because most of our users start when they are in transition, we’ve priced it so that it’s very affordable. You can use the free account forever (meaning, we don’t delete your account or data if you don’t pay), and there is an optional upgrade level that comes out to $5/month when you pay by the year (otherwise, it is $9.95/month). A couple of years ago we even moved most of the Premium features to the free level… it’s all about making these tools accessible to you, whether you are on the free account or have invested $5/month in your career.
If you haven’t checked it out, look at the youtube video on the homepage of JibberJobber.com (a bit dated… we’ve changed the UI a few times since we posted that video), or join one of our orientation webinars.
Still use LinkedIn to find and be found, but definitely use a CRM to keep track of and organize the what and how of your networking!
This is important stuff. Since we can’t rely on the old fashioned “job security” anymore, we need to be more vigilant in our career management!
You know, when you are in a job interview, the question the interviewer asks might not really be the question they want you to answer. Or, to put it another way, they might ask a question just to see if you have… issues.
Here’s a great youtube video where Ford Myers addresses the why’s and how to answer specific questions in a job search interview:
One week ago we announced the awesome access you now have to my career, job search and soft skill video courses on Pluralsight. Today we’re announcing the Pluralsight Video Tracker, which is an internal tool on JibberJobber that allows you to keep track of which Jason Alba courses you have watched and get seven days of JibberJobber premium for each Jason Alba course you finish.
Here are step-by-step instructions on how to take advantage of this very generous access (thank you Pluralsight!) to my videos:
First: login to JibberJobber and click the link right under the menu. NOTE: if you close this box, you can still get access to the right page by clicking Videos, directly under the search box.
Second: Once you click on that link, you’ll come to a page with an explanation of what all of this is about. Note the blue box on the right, where you click to get your personal, unique code. Click that link and you’re on your way!
Third: The blue box will expand and give you (1) your personal code… just copy that and then click the (2) signup button to go to the next page (which will open a new tab). NOTE: Step 3 says to come back to this page to turn on the tracker… we’ll get to that in a minute!
Fourth: See how small that form is? That is IT! No credit card number, no commitment, no strings. This is awesome. Just paste your code in the top box, fill out the form, and then click the button. If you don’t work for a company, don’t worry. Pluralsight wants you to know who they are, and when you land your next job, you can introduce your new team, your boss, etc. to Pluralsight. You now have your Pluralsight account, and the clock starts to tick on 30 days of unlimited access (which means, all of my courses, and the rest of the 4,000+ courses in the library).
Fifth: Notice Step 3 turned into this link. This takes you to the Pluralsight Video Tracker, where you can see what courses get you another 7 days upgrade, and how to easily report each course you watched…. so, click this link.
Sixth: Click the button to start the tracker… this starts the 30 day counter. If you sign up for Pluralsight one day, and click this blue button a different day, your days will be off. No big deal, just do the math in your head, or let us know and we’ll try to adjust it. This counter is internal to JibberJobber, and not coming from Pluralsight.
Seventh: Now that you have clicked that button, you see the tracker… below this image I will explain the 6 highlights.
This shows how many days you have left, according to when you clicked the Turn on Tracker button. This is NOT tied directly to Pluralsight, so if you didn’t click it the same day you got your Pluralsight account, it might be off.
This green progress bar shows you how many Jason Alba courses you have watched. It does not show how many times you have watched one single course. Right now I have fifteen courses in the Pluralsight library. If you watch all fifteen, you’ll be at 100%. If you watch only one course, fifteen times you will only be at 1/15. I wouldn’t worry too much about getting to 100%, unless you are keen on watching all of my courses at least once
This line shows you how many upgraded days you have received because of courses you have reported, and when you premium expires. If the math appears to be off, let us know!
The left column shows the Jason Alba courses… you can click on the title or the link to get to that course. The order is a kind-of-logical-suggestion, but you can watch in whatever order you want.
The eye button is what you click to report that you have completed a course. Every time you watch a course, click the eye button…
Note the counter, which shows how many times I’ve watched a particular course. You can see I’ve watched the Killer Job Search Strategy course 3 times, the Informational Interviews course 25 times, and the Killer Personal Brand course once. Each time you click the button the number increments, and you get another 7 days of premium.
Of course, we reserve the right to audit any self-reporting. If you click 30 times today, we’re guessing you haven’t watched 30 courses in one day… we’ll have a conversation about that. If you did watch 30 courses, and report them all one on day… great. We simply ask that you be honest. Also, once you click 52 times, your submissions go into a queue that Liz will monitor. If you really watched the courses, you’ll still get your seven day upgrades… of course.
Here are two questions I’ve received:
A Pluralsight user asked what happens after the 30 days. Every time you watch a Jason Alba course on Pluralsight, you get another seven days of JibberJobber premium. Whether you came to Pluralsight through JibberJobber, or whether your company pays for your account, or whether you have had your own account for years… you get seven more days on JibberJobber for every Jason Alba course you watch.
Can I leave discussions on the courses on Pluralsight? I’ve been told that yes, you can leave discussions and rankings, even if you are on the 30 day trial. Feel free to leave anything you want as long as it is honest I like to answer questions to courses on those discussion boards, as opposed to individual emails.
Now, carve out some time… even if it’s 30 minutes each day, and get watching! 30 days will come quickly (but the upgrade on Pluralsight is very reasonable, if you need more time!)
David Safeer is not a career coach or career professional. He is a professional who started using JibberJobber a few years ago. I’ve emailed him a number of times over the years and always found him to be really nice, and from his LinkedIn Profile, I can tell he is quite accomplished.
In this hour+ conversation, we talked about a bunch of things, and there were some big AHA! moments for me. Here are some of my notes with times… enjoy!
0:00 — introduction
3:00 – who is David Safeer… his background and professional career
6:00 topic of branding, and rebranding… at a corporate and a personal level
8:20 personal rebranding: “it’s one of the mot difficult things that I have had to do…”
9:45 on getting laid off and shifting directions
10:30 on becoming a freelancer or business owner
12:20 the reality of entrepreneurship – it is freaking scary, and it is really hard!
13:20 pausing and figuring out what you really want to do (instead of panicking in the job search)
14:10 “I didn’t have the confidence in myself”… what should I charge, etc.
16:00 on starting his own business – a lot of work, thought, etc.
18:20 what happened to his company when the recession hit
19:45 during this process, he learned about JibberJobber (through a network contact)
20:30 on closing a business right, or wrong… and learning from it
22:00 the emotions of closing a business, starting a job search…. where was David at? “The toughest couple of years of my life, emotionally.”
24:10 – how to get through very difficult emotional times in the job search (value of a coach — this is awesome!)
25:00 is it worth it to hire a coach? Especially when money is so tight?
25:30 BNI – networking groups… great advice
26:20 – “anyone who doesn’t know how to network, should learn how to!”
26:35 “Capital N Networker”
27:30 “I dont’ remember his name, but I’m going to get on JibberJobber and find him!”
27:50 Tree View “Absolutely amazing”
29:40 “networking forced me out of the house….”
29:45 what do you do at a one-to-one meeting? Lunch…? But then what?!
30:45 could you be a Capital N Networker?
31:40 having connections on LinkedIn vs having relationships with people and where he is at on the Quantity vs. Quality debate…
32:00 going to network meetings… are we being effective, or is this superficial??
33:30 network meetings – are they fun, or are they stressful?
35:30 his trick when entering a network meeting….
36:00 how I feel about networking at conferences… (you guys aren’t alone!)
36:30 when networking gets fun and rewarding
38:10 what is a third degree contact… and how is it different in JibberJobber than a social network? And how and why this impacts the tree view.
39:50 figuring out who to thank for your clients, leads, etc.
40:30 how to thank people who introduced you to contacts
41:00 put BNI in as a contact, so he could track everyone he met through an organization (I would recommend using Tags for that instead of associating to a Company)
42:00 FASCINATING discussion of how to rank people based on (a) do you know people, and (b) will you make those introductions— not for measuring personal relationships, or if they are a good person. This is something he did about 18 months ago… “it was emotionally difficult to me to move someone down from a five star to a three).
43:40 “I had to network UP and ACROSS” – very cool and insightful “that’s when I started making real progress”
44:35 “you need to figure out who are the right people to network with”
45:20 he defines what a five star is (this is BRILLIANT!)
46:45 would you ever have lunch with a 2 star contact? Yes, absolutely… (find out why)
48:00 this new ranking system has “made a huge shift in my productivity”
48:15 using a “cookbook methodology” (or a system)
50:00 “having the RIGHT conversations with the RIGHT people.”
52:00 “it’s really tough to put a friend in a 1 or a 2″ but he’s using ranking not as “how strong is my relationship with that person”
57:00 are you using Email2Log? Surprisingly, no.l Why? Listen here …
59:20 if your audience doesn’t “get it,” is it their fault or your fault? Chastisement from my business coach
62:00ish final thoughts and advice
65:00 Functional Resume WOW! Everyone says to stay away from functional resumes… but he says they are valuable! This is really insightful!
66:20ish – is Functional Resume for everybody? Perhaps not… !
67:35 on finding target companies, and why that didn’t work for him (at an executive level)
68:15 “networking is by far the most effective way to do this”
Today I walked by my neighbor’s horses and thought “I gotta get my camera!” I missed the shot, but the one below was good enough to show my point. THE SHOT was when the black horse, which is in the background on the right, was looking at the brown horse enjoying his food. It was an awesome contrast to see the brown one enjoying life, and the black one looking utterly bored on his no-greens side.
I talk to people all the time who wonder how green the grass is on the other side of the fence. Sometimes it is, many times it isn’t.
Instead of focusing on that, though, let’s focus on the non-green side… the right side. We’re not talking about jumping from greenish to super-green… in this situation we’re talking about the difference between bleak, scarce, horrible to life-sustaining.
Sometimes the opportunities are better, but looking at where we are, we’re discrediting ourselves.
Of course, there will be another field with greener grass… but sometimes the change you need to make IS definitely to the other pasture, where the grass is green enough.
Companies have already drawn defined loyalty for us… we don’t need to worry too much about crossing a company. Heck, the person who feels crossed will likely not be there in three years…
As I have always said to my employees, you have to do what’s best for you and your family. And sometimes that means leaving my field and going to something better.
* This doesn’t apply to my team right now – I want them to stay around for many more years
A couple of years ago I was my own guest on my Ask The Expert call. All of these are free. You can watch this January 2013 recording below. To see this full screen, simply click the little icon by the volume which will make it full screen.