This week is exciting because we’re starting to get into the actual work of the program. I’ve been digesting the information in this week’s assignment for a few hours now and I feel ready to make some initial comments. I have already begun the process of creating my personal brand without realizing it. I joined Twitter on June 2nd of this year in an attempt to become more connected with the library community. This is a decision I’d pondered throughout library school, but I was so busy with school and work that I didn’t feel like I had the time to devote to learning Twitter and to using it to my advantage. When I joined I attempted to get the name “LibraryCarrie” because I thought it had a nice ring to it and it clearly identified my name and my intention. Upon learning that this was taken, I played with several other word/name combinations. I decided to go with DigitalCarrie to reflect my concentration in Digital Libraries and my vision of myself as a digital native. I chose to use the same name when I created this blog for consistency.
It seems that my sub-conscious decisions fall well within the suggestions given for what to consider when creating a personal brand, and I feel relatively confident that I’ve made a good branding decision. I’ve also put a lot of thought into how I want to present myself in the digital realm. I am comfortable using a picture, and thus far I’ve been using a cropped shot of my face. I have heard suggestions that maybe I should take some more professional looking photographs and choose one to put on my website, Twitter, etc. and I’m not sure how I feel about that. The photo I’m currently using was captured at an especially happy and relaxed moment in my life and I feel like it reflects my personality. I’d appreciate any discussion on this issue!
Of course, the photograph is a small piece of how I represent myself. I’ve thought carefully about what type of information about myself I want floating around on the Web, and I feel comfortable with a “profersonal” approach (as mentioned in the cpd23 blog). I think that showing some personality and outside interests gives potential employers, colleagues, and collaborators a better sense of who I am. I have developed a strong interest in healthy living, fitness, and exercise and I feel comfortable sharing this with the world. I have tried to pay close attention to some of the popular librarian bloggers/Twitterers to see how they approach this issue, and it seems that most of them have a definitive library focus but also mix in personal information and interests. I know that some of my personal interests and motivations relate directly to job skills and I think it’s important to highlight them for that reason as well.
My final thought for now, as it’s about lunch time, is that after I read this week’s assignment I went almost directly to my local library to pick up some books. I happened to find myself in the job shelves and stumbled upon a book called “Guerilla Marketing for Job Hunters 2.0” by Jay Conrad Levinson and David E. Perry. When I flipped the book open to get an idea of content I opened directly the the chapter on personal branding. I took this as a sign and checked the book out. I read through the introduction and into the personal branding chapter. I stopped when I got to a two part exercise about determining my marketable skills. It’s essentially making 2 lists: first, things you feel you do well; second, things you enjoy doing. The point is to compare the lists to find overlaps. I intend to do this exercise before I continue in the book, and I will post my lists and the resulting analysis later this week. I’ll also post the results of the Googling myself exercise from Thing 3!