Be seen - a vital key to career success

PUBLISHED : Monday, 25 May, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 25 May, 2009, 12:00am

You might have all the qualities and attributes of an ace financial accountant, or the innovative abilities for a star-studded career as a graphic designer, but if prospective employers don't know about you, you will have little chance of getting the opportunities where you can use your talents to their fullest.

Just as we often buy products that are the most visible to us, employers often hire people known to them.

Trust goes a long way and if prospective employers have seen you around, have heard good reports about you and have formed a positive impression of what you can do for their business, they'll be more likely to hire you.

Follow these guidelines and you'll make a good impression:

Plan ahead

Leaving your personal marketing efforts to the moment when you are desperate for a job is likely to make you come across as a needy employee. You should include regular personal marketing activity into your schedule as an on-going function. Intensify your marketing activity at least six months before you plan to move on to a new job.

Accept the challenge

Choose to believe in yourself and that you can get the job you really want - and be well paid for it. Regular positive self-talk can help drown out negative thoughts. Write out positive statements for yourself such as, 'I have a valuable service to offer, I am excellent at what I do and I am able to make the right connections'. Read these positive statements every day.

Maintain visibility

Attending exhibitions and seminars that relate to your particular field is a good way of meeting the right people. Some of the speakers or exhibitors may even prove to be a good pool of prospective employers.

Attend meetings of clubs or associations in your field. Even better, offer to speak on a topic in which you feel you are particularly knowledgeable. Feel too daunted at that thought? See if there isn't any other activity that you could take on that would give you good exposure.

If you're still at school or still have some years of university studies to complete, you could aim to get odd jobs helping out at places which would offer you the opportunity of meeting prospective employers.


Ask your friends if they know people you could speak to and who could put you in contact with the right companies. Your Facebook abilities may prove to be helpful here. Acknowledge help from your friends by giving them feedback. A small gift as a token of appreciation may even be appropriate.

The importance of questions

Prepare appropriate questions when connecting with contacts who could lead you to prospective employers, and for prospective employers themselves. You want to create a good impression.

Role play the questions beforehand with someone whose opinion you value.

Take a little action or a lot of action, but you need to take some action. The world needs your services so quit hiding out.