1. What Is Your Why?
Choosing a career can be difficult during our lives we spend roughly 90,000 hours working!
Before exploring all your options it is best to reflect on who you are as a person. As a youth organisation, the first thing we do to support young people to complete an Ikigai Worksheet. Ikigai is a Japanese idea which generally means ‘life with purpose’.
Once you have found your purpose it is easier to find a career that suits you and your skills. The next step is to look at your personality type and your learning style, this will help make your decision easier when choosing the next steps of your career.
Not only should you consider your personality and skills, it is important to look at the mula you can make
We can’t live off air and the money you earn will play a big part in your lifestyle.
2. Identify Your Personal Values & Beliefs
Let’s continue with the idea of going into the fashion industry, you may be a vegetarian and be against cruelty to animals. This would mean most popular brands who use leather, animal fur and other animal products would not be suitable for you and your beliefs.
Having self identity and knowing your values and beliefs as an individual will help you say no to certain ‘opportunities’ and help prevent regret and time wasting in the future.
3. Target Your Audience
So now you’ve found a number of industries or jobs you’d like to work in, the next step is to think about the people you want to reach. Think about the following:
Where can you find them both on and offline?
What job roles or experience do they have and can they help you start your career?
What content can you create to get their attention?
When is the best time to reach out to them?
How can you reach them? Is social media,email, phone or in person better?
Based on your skillset and your audience think about how you can create content to build your personal brand. For example, if you want to get into the fashion industry the best platforms to share your knowledge, provide valuae and connect with your audience would be Instagram or YouTube because of their visual features as opposed to Twitter or LInkedin.
Of course you may be able to find professionals on other platforms try and specialise in one or two social media platforms at a time and then build others later.
4. Create Content
This may sound over the top or big headed but having your own personal website is the ultimate way to promote yourself online especially on Google. When applying for jobs or starting a business the first place people go to when doing research is Google.
Remember first impressions count, people want to know who you are first before engaging with you.
A Personal Website
To help you get found easier in Google you should have your own personal domain (web address) as your name e.g. firstlast.com this way you have more control over what Google finds about you.
Even if other websites that mention you, you are still in control of your own website. Your website can include anything such as written blog posts, or videos, audio (podcasts) and images that represent your thoughts, industry news or interviews etc.
The most ideal domain for your website would be a .COM however, if that is not available .NET or .ORG should be fine. There are loads of websites you can register your domain some include Namecheap, Siteground or GoDaddy.
Install WordPress.org, this is most popular blogging platform used by over 35% of the internet with a big online community helping you customise your website exactly how you want.
Tip: Write blog posts based on what people are searching for. Use Ubersuggest to find keywords your audience are looking for. Use those keywords on your blog post. Promote your blog post on social media and send it to other bloggers/websites who may be interested in sharing it. This will help you get to the top of Google.
If possible it is best to make your social media url’s the same as your web address (instagram.com/firstlast) that way you are easier to find online. Use social media to post images and videos of yourself or content related to your industry that your audience can relate to.
If you are visually creative and want to reach a younger audience (18-24 yr olds) Instagram is a great platform to promote yourself.
Tip: Try turning your profile to a business account so you can track how many people have visited your profile as well as their age, gender and location. This way you can learn more about your audience and keep your posts relatable
Facebook is the largest social media platform in the world, even though you’re audience may not be using it, having a dedicated ‘Facebook Page’ will still be beneficial especially as Facebook owns Instagram.
You may want to do paid advertising later and having a Facebook account will make this easier in the future. Use videos to build your audience, it is the best way to build your confidence and your reputation.
Tip: Ensure your profile is set to private and try not to post anything that could damage your reputation. Employers and potential customers may research your name before contacting you.
Even though it’s not talked about much a lot of professionals use Twitter, it’s a great way to have online conversations and share industry related content with hashtags and retweets.
Tip: Use the search feature to jump into conversations and share your views. Also use hashtags and trending tweets to connect with people.
Create a Linkedin account, this is the best platform to find professionals you want to connect with. Use this platform as a digital version of your CV.
Use Linkedin to leave comments on posts, join groups, follow influential people in your industry and share your professional opinion. Showcase your skills and knowledge with short, blog posts and videos people in your industry will appreciate. Always provide value!
5. Make Contacts
After you’ve chosen a career path, created content and built your reputation the next step is to develop your ‘professional network’. Use your social media accounts to connect with people in your industry, if possible try and meet them at industry events or if you’re feeling really confident, ask to meet them for lunch.
It may feel a little scary, but you’d be surprised how many adults will take time out to help ambitious young people. Hopefully you’ll be able to find someone who can support you as a mentor.
Building a brand as a student is extremely important, as a young person leaving education you probably won’t have much experience, however what you do have is time and technology. Use what you have to share your skills and build your reputation. There’s never been a better time to create and connect with people.