Today’s workforce is getting brighter and younger each and every day; for this reason, you not only have to keep up with the competition, you must beat the competition. Some employers tend to scrutinize the applications and resumes of older job seekers more so than younger applicants. Older applicants really must stand out to get the attention of a hiring manger or owner because employers do tend to look at younger faces and see longevity, enthusiasm and just more to offer than older applicants. We know that younger applicants don’t necessarily bring more to the table; we know that experience is something that younger applicants simply don’t have. What you have to do is convince prospective employers that you bring more to the table than your younger competition. Here are some suggestions from Colorado Christian University and “experts” in the career development field about how to market yourself in a highly competitive, young workforce.
How to Market Yourself
Even if you have been in the workforce for decades, you will need some tips on how to market yourself in the coming years. Things have certainly changed since you last applied for work, and if you don’t impress employers at first glance, you’ll never get your foot in the door for an interview, let alone get the job. You will find thousands, if not millions, of articles online about how to “market yourself” for the job hunt, but what does it mean to market yourself? Some experts that you should look at yourself as a product and what you provide to future employers is a service. It’s your responsibility to identify and focus on what you can offer to your customer (the person in charge of hiring and the company to which you’re applying).
The main goal when “marketing yourself” is to establish yourself as an expert in your field and have people recognize your talents. By increasing your visibility, employability and resiliency, you allow more opportunities to find jobs and even for them to find you. After all, think about LinkedIn and how employers are now searching this huge employee database for qualified individuals. And, before we go any further, if you are not familiar with LinkedIn, we advise you to become familiar with it as soon as possible. LinkedIn is a hugely popular tool to make connections and find employment opportunities all over the world.
Career Vision has provided a guide to help you market yourself; here are Career Visions’ eight steps to market the yourself and the service you provide:
- Define your mission and what you have to offer. Start with you knowledge, include what role best fits your talents and detail what you have to offer.
- Decide what you want to achieve. In the past, this would be considered the “objective” on your resume. While we no longer use the word “objective” or even include this section on resumes, it helps to have in your head an answer to the questions, “What can you bring to the table?” “What can you offer our company that other applicants cannot?”
- Determine performance measures. How will you determine if you are achieving your goals? What measurable indicators will you use to monitor your job search success?
- Outline your SWOT’s (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) and assess how your strengths stack up against the competition and how you an address your weaknesses
- Identify the markets you which to target. You should decide where to push your focus: managers, mentors, and others who may be important in your marketing process.
- Develop a marketing strategy by sharing ideas with like-minded individuals and trend information with them.
- Define implementation strategies–what will you do, when and with what resources?
- Evaluate your marketing plan periodically to determine its success or lack thereof. Determine what is working well and what is not and then make changes accordingly.
Interested in learning more about the workforce and/or the job application process? Please read these CAGS blogs: