Blogs for jobs: 3 ways to make web writing work for you

Whether you’re in the searching, ladder-climbing or sector changing mode, you’ve got a reason to start (or recommit to) your career-focused blog.

A blog is a great way to showcase who you are and what you want to offer. When you begin sharing the story of your work, your unique combination of training, experience and values come together to create a picture of your ideal role and team. Rather than pigeon-holing, this helps focus your job search efforts and helps employers evaluate your fit on their team.
Consider these three career phases, and what blogging offers you along the way:

The Searcher: Right now, you’re working on your 1,000th online application and hoping this is the one. But rather than trying to stand out with a bolder font type or more calls to HR, what if you actually thought like an employer…When Sally gets your application and it intrigues her, she then Googles your name (yes, it’s true) and – instead of your high school track and field times, or that awkward comment you left on a news article – up pops your blog, and the top story is conveniently relevant to the job you just applied to. Once you’re in the interview, this blog that’s forced you to articulate yourself on all things relevant in your field will help you be the confident and clear candidate Sally is looking for.

The Climber: You’ve been waiting for George to retire for, oh, nine years, and you know you’ll be perfect for his role. Show your boss (and his) that you’ve got the succession chops by showing some initiative – take the next few months to begin articulating your vision of the future of your sector. Your interest and inspiration will be infectious, and if the brass don’t respond with a promotion then your leadership-laden blog will be setting you up for recruitment to a more visionary team elsewhere.

The Shifter: You came, you conquered, and now you’re moving on. As you ponder the risks of a mid-stream career change, think about how you can break into the conversations happening around your new field of choice. How does your wealth of experience translate into their world, their jargon and their needs? You’ve got a lifetime of stories that you want to share, and you’ve got  lot of learning to do about this new territory – why not take your journey online, and explore those synergies out loud?
Remember to strike a balance between your authentic voice and your professional image. You want this blog to tell your work story in a way that reveals your learnings (read: failures) without embarrassing your colleagues or clients – you’ll want them to be your biggest fans and allies as you build your following, and not your disgruntled critics and commenters.