Building a Personal Brand Online
We've always been judged by the company we keep. We'll always be judged by our actions. This doesn't change, but there's never been more information publicly available to allow others to judge us on our words, our deeds and the company we keep.
I gained my first job in public relations in 1988 and though I'd been writing about technology for a living, I had not even heard of Tim Berners-Lee. Nor did his invention of the World Wide Web soon after that come to most people's attention until the middle of the next decade.
Back in 1988, wanting to leave publishing and thinking that I knew about the fledgling technology PR sector, I approached a specialist recruitment consultancy. They agreed to speak to the public relations consultancy I said most interested me – Aeberhard and Partners, better known as A Plus – and I secured an interview through this route. An interview with the consultancy founder John Aeberhard (it was then named after him, though it's since been absorbed into one of the global giants) was all it took to secure my break.
Presumably the company followed up with one or more of my referees. But what else could they do to check my credentials? I was not applying for an entry-level position, so a writing test was not appropriate. I'd met some of my new colleagues through my previous role so they knew that I'd been following the sector from the “other side”. It was a simple process, mixing luck on my side, and ...