Beat the autumn blues with the second in a two-part series of job hacks and tips by Jo Dalton, founder of JD&Co, one of Europe’s leading executive search companies. Having, coached, mentored and hired over 350 executives, Jo knows what it takes to stand out from the crowd.

Whether you’re searching for the finest industry talent to grow your business, or setting out your stall for the head-hunters, the following advice will put you on the pathway to the success you deserve.

Develop your 'you brand'

I talk to my team and the individuals whom I coach all the time about their ‘You Brand’. It’s vital that you spend time on developing this as a project, which you can develop with a mentor.

Ask yourself:

  • What is your brand?
  • What are your name and brand synonymous with?
  • What is your USP?
  • What do you want to achieve with your brand?
When answering, consider the character of your career so far – your strengths and successes – and think about where your talents lie. If your friends and colleagues had to describe that ‘one thing’ you’re good at, what would it be?

You can get help in doing this by asking someone else for their opinion of you. Your aim is to recognise how you stand out from your peers, and to describe that in a concise and engaging way.

When updating your online profile, pay attention to detail because it shows how much you care about your professional presentation. A pet hate of mine is seeing the ‘updated’ profiles of people in a new, exciting role. The latest job is listed, but the previous roles lack context and remain written in the present tense. A big chance has been missed to build the persona and convey how the individual intends to start their new post.

Building your personal brand will not happen overnight. It takes time and effort but the rewards will come.

Reach out

We’re not all naturals at networking, but it’s a crucial part of being noticed and can really pay off. Whether its conferences, speaking engagements, dinners or awards ceremonies, consistently appearing will enable your personal profile to blossom and will put you at the cutting edge of your industry.

Reaching out through your alumni is a similarly powerful way to develop business. Everyone knows about the PayPal Mafia: as colleagues of mine, they are a great example of people who have moved on to create some of the best tech companies around.

Think about the last time you reached out to former colleagues – they may hold the key to unlocking exciting future prospects.

Be current, be relevant

Great business people continually reflect upon personal and professional successes, and ask how relevant their career experience is within the current and emerging industry landscape.

A good place to start is to consider the language you use – do you employ modern words, phrases and business terms? Embracing change in how you express yourself will get you on an upward course that sharpens your attitude and opens your eyes to what’s going on.

This extends to the conversations you have online – search for the burning issues within your industry; the problems your colleagues and competitors are trying to solve. Are controversial issues in focus, and what’s fuelling debate?

In the tech industry, subjects dominating the headlines include blockchain, cryptocurrency, AI, big data, growth hacking, security, globalisation and gender pay gaps. There are so many topics to get involved in. Instead of being an internet wallflower, read peers’ blogs, develop your own opinions and contribute to the online dialogue. Be active and be seen!

Remember that the above advice is only effective with momentum, so each day consider what small thing you can do to help change the status quo, so that you keep moving forward. In time, your professional character will expand, opening your eyes to bigger steps you can take to get into the best shape possible for opportunities that are guaranteed to arise.

For more information about how Jo Dalton can help and support you please get in touch at