Establishing Your Personal Brand Through Stationery, Part 1
If you are applying for jobs, are establishing a side hustle or your own company, or are otherwise engaging in professional correspondence as your own agent and not on behalf of another entity, then this topic is for you.
Part 1 of this series introduces the various pieces of correspondence that are a reflection of your personal brand and what to include in the letterhead that should appear in all of the pieces of that correspondence.
Let’s take a second and talk about personal branding as far as it pertains to stationery and letterheads. I want to touch on this because it usually comes up in the presentation I give on cover letters, and while I try to address what job seekers need to know about stationery and letterheads as a part of building a solid cover letter, it’s not the focus of the presentation and therefore isn’t something for which I want to use my precious 60 – 90 minutes. (And, yes. We spend more than an hour on cover letters, and we barely skim the surface on stationery and personal branding. If you are curious, you should check out my Events page, and register for my next workshop!)
First, let’s review why this is a part of personal branding. If you regularly send out letters attached in emails or in the mail as a part of the work you do for a job, then you are probably sending those letters on company letterhead. Sure, your name, signature, and job title may be on the letter, but your company’s branding is in the letterhead. What I’m talking about is for your own individual use. If you are applying for jobs, are establishing a side hustle or your own company, or are otherwise engaging in professional correspondence as your own agent and not on behalf of another entity, then this topic is for you.
Sometimes we only think about putting our name and contact information on correspondence when we are dusting off our resumes, and while job-application materials are certainly a part of this topic, I want you to realize that this isn’t just about putting your name on a piece of paper. Your name is your brand, so whether you are putting this information at the top of a resume, a cover letter, a pain letter, as a cover and explanation to a sample of work, on a business card, or any other form of correspondence that isn’t being sent to a close friend, family member, or loved one, be intentional about it.
Alright, esteemed colleagues. Let’s dig in.
Should You Create an Instagrammable Resume?
Wondering if you should get on board with a graphics-filled, poster-esque resume? I share my thoughts on the Wall Street Journal article that brings the murky matter of a bitmoji’s place in a resume into sharp relief.
Have you seen an “Instagrammable” resume? Chip Cutter describes them in a recent Wall Street Journal article. If you are in transition, you may be wondering whether you need to get one to make an inroad with a prospective employer. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, check out the Wall Street Journal post. The business world is seeing an onrush of resumes that look like posters, featuring everything from trendy colors like mint and rose gold to cartoons — yes, cartoons (enter bitmojis like the one I've included of myself above) — of the applicants and other graphics. On one hand, fans insist that these resumes are absolute beauties that are attractive and modern and that help candidates distinguish themselves with a specific brand aesthetic on the market. Detractors, on the other hand, protest that they run afoul the standards of professionalism that the business world demands. So…what’s the deal? Is there a verdict?