In today’s digital world, professional reputation matters more than at any other time ever before. It can help you get the next promotion better, the next raise easier, the next job faster.
Here is the problem. Professional reputation is tough to acquire, and easy to discover.
Our work-related imprimatur is available for all to see online, through social media sites and search engines. While social media sites have user-driven resume content that can be positioned in an optimally favourable light, search engines are less predictable and consistent in what they reveal about our reputation.
And in this age, when what others say about us might matter more than what we say about ourselves, perceptions held by key stakeholders are often weighted more towards our reputation than our resume.
So, how do we impact our reputation, even as we burnish our resumes?
Yes, we can get more recommendations and more endorsements on professional networking sites, no doubt. Yes, you can publish more fluffy articles on topics of general interest, for sure.
But, let me ask you this.
What are the odds of seeing a recommendation on a social media site that is less than stellar? Or of finding an endorsement on a social media site that isn’t a result of reciprocation? Or of reading an article online with truly innovative and surprising content that reveals something you didn’t already know?
Slim to none. And Slim just left the building.
Don’t you think the folks who are reading these recommendations and endorsements and articles are wising up to this?
You bet they are.
Adding more recommendations and endorsements to your social media profile is a lost cause. Adding more sections to your professional social media profile is not going to transform your professional trajectory any time soon. The marginal return of your next how-to article is close to zero.
Everyone is doing these things. You are not going to stand out of the crowd by doing what everyone else is doing.
Let me suggest a much more effective way to enhance your reputation. It is different and unusual in its approach. But, it can also be extraordinary and unique in its impact.
Let me be more specific, before you stop reading, and consign this article to the same heap as all those other articles I just referred to.
Deliver engagements OUTSIDE of your daily job, for organizations that are DIFFERENT than your own.
What does that mean?
If you are in mobile marketing at a telecom provider, deliver a speaking engagement at a large retailer on how to market effectively on the small screen. If you are leading business transformation at a large financial services firm, do a consulting engagement at a mid-sized logistics firm on how to do the same. If you write advertising copy for an agency, conduct a training session at a company that is not a current client on how to revitalize their advertising program.
And when you deliver these engagements, get feedback from the recipients about the quality of your work, and the depth of your expertise. Make the feedback publicly available.
In fact, go one better. Get your clients from these engagements to rate you objectively. And display these ratings openly.
Told you this was different.
Yes, it is a bit risky. Yes, you will stumble a bit early. Yes, it will be a little nerve-wracking to see the early evaluations.
But, over time, you will build a body of work like no one else’s. You will construct a professional footprint bigger than anyone else’s. And you will acquire a reputation that is brighter and more sustainable than any other.
And your career will scale heights that you haven’t yet imagined.
Well, how do you find these engagements, you ask?
You could go to websites that cater to people looking for these types of engagements. There are a few of those. Your favourite search engine can find them for you faster than I can type their names in this article, so I won’t waste your time doing that.
But, when you find them, and dig deeper into them, you will discover this.
They are meant for professionals who speak, and train, and consult, and publish full time, for a living, not for folks like you with a day job who want to try their hand at it to expand your brand.
However, there is one website dedicated to building your reputation in this fashion. It is the first ever engagement network, with 8 different types of knowledge sourcing engagements, offered by professionals for professionals.
It is called QuantumFly.
QuantumFly doesn’t do pokes, pins, and pics. It doesn’t send reminders of anniversaries and birthdays. It doesn’t curate news articles about your connections.
Instead, it helps you DO stuff. Like leveraging your social network connectivity to find engagements in your area of expertise globally. Like getting and displaying feedback on your work in these engagements. Like building an economically rational network of customers and providers for Brand You.
It will soon be the largest knowledge sourcing portal on the planet. You should check it out http://quantumfly.com/
You can thank us later.