Sunday, November 26, 2006

Portfolios Are Not Just for Creative Professionals

Over on the Simply Hired Blog, there is a post about the value of candidate portfolios and I couldn't agree more. Lately I have been working on an assignment consulting with a number of career transition clients in creative fields including art directors, photo retouchers, writers, and web developers. They proudly show me their portfolios which helps me create an immediate tangible and visual understanding of what they do and how they can add value to a future organization. In addition, the portfolios quickly brand them and speak volumes about the type of corporate culture they will be successful in. Other job seekers can learn quite a bit from creative professionals. Creativity is not limited to an original piece of writing or art or a portfolio of photographs...creativity abounds in all professions. While some work might be considered proprietary, most job seekers have examples of their work that they can show without compromising confidentiality. An IT professional can showcase a project status report from a previous project. A financial executive can submit a deal sheet. A human resources executive can offer a benefits vendor analysis report. Operations professionals can develop a list of customer retention strategies and their success rates. Sales executives can prepare a presentation with graphs and charts to identify various metrics associated with business growth. Candidates can create web-based or paper portfolios to build credibility in their candidacy and accelerate their search. They say a picture is worth a thousand words...a great portfolio might be worth several thousand dollars in additional income if it builds your brand and helps you land your next job!


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