A client of mine recently brought this video to my attention, and once again I'm reminded of the importance of making sure your bio does its job: to let people know who you are and what is important to you... whether you're an eagle or a duck, or something in between!
When companies or clients are considering who to hire, your bio is a great vehicle for helping them make a decision based on how you "fit" into their company culture. Don't waste this opportunity by having anything less than a great bio.
A friend told me about three great videos, the first of which you can see here: http://vimeo.com/27244727. What intrigued me as much as the videos was the way the film makers managed to capture their journey in just a few words, in essence a bio. Just 48 words, and yet you know what you need to know. Good job, Guys!
"3 guys, 44 days, 11 countries, 18 flights, 38 thousand miles, an exploding volcano, 2 cameras and almost a terabyte of footage... all to turn 3 ambitious linear concepts based on movement, learning and food...into 3 beautiful and hopefully compelling short films...
= a trip of a lifetime."
Most people are so relieved to finally get their bio written, they tend to post it and forget it. Does that sound like you?
How often should you update your bio? The answer varies with the person, of course, but a general rule is whenever something noteworthy happens, or at least once a year. Chances are good that something has changed in that time, and your bio should reflect that.
Did you get a promotion? A new certification? Join a board or other professional organization? Has something happened to your company (not necessarily you)? All of these events merit an update to your personal or professional bio. The good news is that you are not starting all over! You have already written a great bio, keeping it updated is a piece of cake!
One client came to me and asked for my help in updating his bio. I asked him how long it had been since he wrote it to begin with. "A few years," he said. "It says my kids are 8 and 10, and they're in college now."
On a related note, many people don't update their bios because they don't have access to their website, whether it's their own or their company's. That's a whole different hurdle that we can discuss at a later date. For now, when was the last time your bio was updated? If more than a year, go forth and update!
That's question I'm often asked when either writing or reviewing bios. Many talented, successful people feel unsure of whether or not they should mention that they don't have a degree. Here's what Chuck Blakeman, author of "Making Money is Killing Your Business", has to say on the topic:
"Learning is not education. Millions of higher degree recipients make less during their careers than people who dropped out of high school. And millions who never finished high school make huge impacts and a lot of money.
We miss cause and effect all the time. As an example, people love to say, “College graduates make a million dollars more in their lifetime than non-college graduates.”Is it because they went to school, or because they are motivated to do anything that will make them successful? I think it’s the latter."
Read Chuck's entire blog post here.
Well said, Chuck, thanks for sharing your thoughts with my readers!
If you have questions like this that pertain to writing your own great bio, please contact me. I'll answer your question here.