I recently had the privilege to speak with Dr. Mildred Culp, the pioneer behind the syndicated WorkWise. She has fresh perspective (and is funny too) so I’m thrilled I had the chance to connect with her on the topic of authenticity in the job search.
When the final article is published, I will link to it here. In the meantime, here are some things that you can keep in mind to keep it real when you are interviewing for your next opportunity:
Authenticity can’t be faked. Authenticity is more than just being honest. It’s about showcasing your true talents and abilities using the context of your personality and values. Authenticity can be a key differentiator in personal brand – and can help a job seeker land the right opportunity more quickly.
Authenticity requires honest assessment. Self assessment and reflection is necessary as you can’t be authentic if you do not perceive yourself as others do. Be honest about your strengths and showcase how you are working on your weaknesses and turning them into opportunities for improvement – especially when you are seeking a new opportunity!
If you are to be authentic, you can’t be someone else. Be yourself, but be your best self. There is freedom in candor – you allow your values to come through and help ensure that you are pursuing an opportunity that will reflect your priorities.
Authenticity requires simple, clear communications. Being truthful can be done well and can showcase to employers what is in it for them when you become an employee. Authenticity can go a long way in establishing rapport and connection with a hiring manager.
Above all else, authenticity means you must disclose information appropriately (especially with the prevalence of social media). Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Quora, blogs – and even YouTube – are all good ways to showcase your true self and show what value you can add to a company. You must be able to be found online, and the things you post help define that you have a brand beyond your resume and cover letter. My primary piece of advice for this is to be real. Don’t be afraid to post personal snippets, but be wise in what you post.
Authenticity means nothing without consistency. You can’t just decide to be authentic one day. It is a brand that is developed interaction by interaction. Ensure that every interaction in your hiring process reflects your best you.