By: Murray A. Mann and Rose Mary Bombela-Tobias
INVEST IN YOUR PROFESSIONAL PORTFOLIO TO MAXIMIZE YOUR CAREER NET WORTH
By Murray A. Mann and Rose Mary Bombela-Tobias
Co-authors, Barron’s The Complete Job Search Guide for Latinos
Asset management, balance sheet review, due diligence, short- and long term goal development, investment strategizing, ROI, sound credit rating, maximizing value, and building high net worth are as important to attaining financial security as they are to realizing your career aspirations.
In this article we examine one of the most overlooked, yet extraordinarily powerful vehicles for driving your job search and career success: professional or career portfolios.
What are Career Portfolios?
Career portfolios present a three-dimensional picture of Brand You. They are a visual representation of your values, abilities, hard/soft skills, capabilities, knowledge, qualities, accomplishments and contributions – in a dynamic way that projects your assets, worth, and potential. In short, a professional portfolio is a compilation of career-related documents: Rèsumè, performance evaluations, letters of recommendations, details of work projects, examples of your writing, project outcomes, products, copies of training certificates, and so on.
Myth: Career portfolios require a lot of work and provide little return on my investment of time since most employers do not have the time to review them.
Truth: Strategically presented career portfolios are seriously evaluated by recruiters, hiring officials and managers.
Reality 1 A master portfolio makes crafting your career marketing materials easier.
Reality 2: A well-conceived, targeted portfolio can be the difference in networking yourself into a job interview and being offered the position after the interview. In the workplace, strong portfolios can improve performance evaluations and facilitate better work assignments and upward mobility.
The very act of organizing your personal portfolio brings clarity to your career direction. The process requires reflection and analysis. When you sequence the documents in your portfolio you begin thinking more broadly about your collection of talents. You also think more deeply about who you are. As a result you become empowered in your job search and career management.
Why Are Career Portfolios Worth the Effort?
A Master or Comprehensive career portfolio provides a solid foundation for making career decisions by “hay que poner su casa en orden” – putting your house in order. It is the source for building your targeted portfolios.
- Creates a personal database from which you can assess your values and assets, construct your career management plan, and develop and evolve your personal career brand.
- Helps you prepare for a performance review, seek a promotion or specific career assignment, and apply for educational opportunities.
- Assists you in crafting your rèsumè, cover letters, and other career marketing documents.
- Is customizable to create targeted career portfolios.
- Fosters the habit of documenting your accomplishments, contributions, and results.
- Monitors and verifies your career development.
Targeted Job Search and Internship Portfolios
Targeted career portfolios are critical tools in executing successful internship, job searches, and career advancement. These portfolios document the claims you make in your rèsumè and interview. They demonstrate your value to the employer. Targeted portfolios can give you a decisive edge over your competition.
- Help you prepare for and conduct interviews with confidence.
- Draw attention to BRAND YOU and the key information you want to convey.
- Showcase your assets and potential value for the position you are applying for.
- Set you apart from your competition as a premier candidate for the position.
- Match your skill-sets with the needs of the employer.
- Focuses the interview conversation on the points you want to make.
- Validate the claims you make in your rèsumè with tangible proof; enhances your credibility.
- Establish a positive emotional connection for the employer with your intangibles (i.e., soft skills, working ethic, personality, and corporate culture fit).
Below are examples of a variety of ways portfolios can be use to market yourself and support your career development efforts.
- Master or Comprehensive to serve as your primary database
- Brand You
- Job Search Marketing Campaigns
- Internet or Online
- Job Interviewing
- Performance Management and Review
- Special Skills or Interests
- Educational and Learning
Remember: “El que no enseña, no vende,“ if you don’t show your wares, you can’t sell.
We recommend that you take advantage of the professional development and networking programs offered by your local NHBA chapter, Spring Regional Meetings and at the Annual Leadership Conference.
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