The Self-Promotion Balancing Act
Image via Leifr/Shutterstock.com
I had a good chat with my friend Emilia as we wandered around Greenlake the other day. We were “discussing” annoying people, and realized that this particular set of people were very active self promoters, hence our repulsion. Seriously, we all know one or two people who every time you see them at a meetup, around town, or read their blog they are talking about themselves or the last awesome thing they did. (If you don’t know anyone like this you might want to check that it’s not because you are too busy talking about yourself to hear someone else talk about themselves!)
But where is the line between annoying and raising awareness of how you deserve the praise, promotion, salary bump… etc? Is there a way to be successful, have the necessary people be aware of your greatness, without being an asshole? Or is it a lose-lose proposition… if you consider being an asshole a loss, which I do :)
Always be in Beta.
Inspired by Ben Casnocha, author of The Startup of You, I’m going to try and use writing to create fully formed ideas. I hope to fuel some discussions as well, but at the very least solidifying opinions, ideas, and action items.
Julia Hartz using BriteCamp, the workshop series Ty White and I created, as an example of how to build company culture. This is from her talk at the GROW 2012 conference… yipee!
Excited to evangelize a great consumer software product to new users while working to retain the current ones through the education of the customer, engaging a social media audience, and constantly providing useful input to enhance the product for the customer.
Kick Your Own Butt*
*or enlist a friend.
I’m not really sure if anyone likes looking for a new job. It’s hard work, and time consuming (especially if you are currently employed). But I think the worst thing I see in a job hunt, is drawing it out. You’re going to take an ego beating no matter what, it’s better to get it over with as soon as possible! And of course now you know how I take bandaids off too…
So I recommend making a google doc (or whatever else works for you) to track jobs, companies, connections you’ve made, etc. And I recommend making weekly goals, however tiny. Put it on your calendar to check in with yourself. Better yet, share that google doc with a friend or two and add a date to both your calendars to check up on it - it will keep you honest and all your friend has to do is promise to hunt you down if you don’t.
Here’s a sample I made - it’s read only so just make a copy or create your own. It’s simple but it keeps you honest!
I would also ask that if you think of something awesome to change or add (or make it prettier) please let me know- this was just a quick thing I slapped together. Thanks!
So You Got A Phone Interview…
This morning at Booty Camp (yes that’s really what it’s called) a fellow Booty Babe (…) asked if I had any phone interview tips. Here are a couple - what do you think?
- Are you talking to a recruiter or hiring manager? She was going to have the call with the person that would be her boss. Which means that usually, they have great content knowledge but may have never been trained in giving phone interviews. In her case, last time she applied the same person didn’t give her a lot of chance to speak. It’s ok to be assertive, just don’t be pushy or rude. Make sure you get your story out.
- Be excited! I’ve heard a ton of times, “He was okay but he didn’t seem to be excited about the role”, or “She talked about her last job like she was really bored”. They want to see passion!!! (okay, one ! is probably enough).
- Remember, with your resume, elevator speech, and anything you communicate when you’re applying is that you are qualified for THIS job, not that you were good at your last job. Think about the top conversation topics that highlight that. Don’t go into depth about what you did before - it obviously wasn’t perfect for whatever reason, so leave the less exciting stuff out.
- It’s ok to admit you need to learn something. It really helps if you can talk about training you did before, especially on your own for work related skills. For instance, I’m a nerd and took 2 semesters of French and one of Podcasting through the local community college. Does it relate to what I am doing now? Hell no. Does it show I am willing to give up 3 hours a week to learn something new? Yes! Take a sewing class at a local store. Do Codecademy and earn some badges. Watch Khan Academy videos… you get the idea.
Do you have any other tips, or things you’re worried about when it comes to phone interviews?
I’ve spent a lot of time sending pieces of advice to friends asking for help in their job hunt. I’ve decided to keep track of it in one place - either for the friends who haven’t asked yet or as a good starting point for those that do.
Please feel free to ask questions, and note that this is just a quick version. And don’t hesitate to email me and ask for specifics! I would also love to hear what worked and what didn’t, especially for different fields, regions, etc.
The Seattle Thaw…
I’m starting a social club. Just an excuse to meet new people and hang out with the people you kinda know, like coworkers, neighbors. Come tomorrow night to our first happy hour:
And/or join our Facebook group:
Please spread the word - the point is to meet a ton of new people!