Last year it was reported that there were over 80 thousand unemployed and underemployed young people in Botswana. Now more than ever companies are looking for individuals that stand out from the rest of the pile, the self driven, passionate and ambitious people that can actively contribute to the growth and culture of the company. Now more than ever, every graduate needs to package and effectively communicate their personal brands. A creative and impactful Personal Brand is what can actively separate one job seeker from another in the search for sustainable employment.
Gaborone Library in partnership with Career Coaching hosted another Youth Initiative Mentorship program this year, aptly themed Personal and Professional Branding and it was an honour to have been in attendance.
‘Your personality is what sells and solidifies your brand, so it is very important to know , understand and effectively communicate who you are to a potential employer or investor’ shared Mr Biggie Tangane, guest speaker, senior account analyst at DeBeers Group of companies and founder of Careers Roundtable. Solution-driven, hardworking and self confessed people’s builder, Mr Tangane eagerly shared his four rules of success in any area of life.
Firstly he highlighted the importance of authenticity, remarking ‘when you are honest from the get go about what you want and how you can make a difference, you become memorable’
Secondly, ‘being present, working hard and a strong work ethic all ensure that you differentiate yourself from the countless other job seekers on the market’
Thirdly, Mr Tangane shared on the importance of self confidence and body language being the make or break first impressions that influence whether you get your desired job or investment. His last rule of success focused on being bold and courageous and to always think outside the box, ‘if you can find out where your potential employer or investor goes to church or a sport he regularly plays, insert yourself into their world so you are better positioned to share your intentions be it of job shadowing, mentorship, attachment or employment at their company’.
Mr Tangane closed off his presentation by sharing vital questions to ask yourself in order to build or rebuild your personal brand. ‘Who are you? What are you good at? How do you make people feel? How do other people perceive me? Moreover, ask yourself, what is that one core value that you consider to be fundamental in that it drives you daily?
‘Personally I’m driven by excellence but some people will rather opt for integrity or empathy, the most important thing is figuring out what people remember you for’ Tangane shared concluding his presentation and opening the floor for questions.
Personal and Professional branding is the cornerstone of who you are, what people perceive you to be and what impressions you leave. Perhaps the most widely known and used adage is that ‘your personal brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room. So as young person in Botswana how are you branding yourself to your peers, to people you meet on the street, to potential employers or investors and most importantly how are you branding yourself online. Social media had afforded the youth access to information at the touch of a button, free platforms to share ideas, experiences and passions and made employment and recruitment easier. So the question that remains is, are you as a young Motswana making the most of your social media presence to better position yourself and your brand? If someone was to look at your social media pages what would they conclude about you and your character?
Overall it was an enriching and enlightening session and I look forward to the next one. Remember all the sessions are free of charge, so what are you waiting for? Come soak up some knowledge, gain new skills, share your experiences and network.