You Are the Product — An Effective Strategy for a Job Search

I encourage everyone, even if they are happy in their current job, to reflect on their career and goals, and more importantly to take stock of themselves. Take the time to develop a compelling story about your qualifications for your ideal job and don’t sell yourself short. I have had many sales or marketing professionals come to me for job search assistance that felt they were doing a poor job of marketing and selling the product they know best — themselves! Perhaps they were raised to be modest and bragging was frowned upon, but consider the old saying “It isn’t bragging if it’s true”. Why not share with potential employers all of the powerful, positive attributes you possess?

If you want to make a career move and are going to launch a job search, or just want to explore opportunities to change careers, you need to consider your marketing strategy and prepare for the sales call. Since sales is a subset of marketing let’s look at marketing first:

Your resume and Linked In page are your personal marketing tools. They need to convey your Unique Value Proposition to get, and hold, the attention of the audience you want to reach and connect. The goal is to have them want to know you better and schedule an interview aka the “sales” call — be it by phone, Zoom, or face to face. Preparing for the interview and understanding the buying behavior and motivation of your targeted audience is vital.

What are the key factors hiring managers look for in the field you are searching in? How do you match up?

Your Value-Adds: What you can bring to a job and organization can be broken down into quantitative, easily verified attributes such as:

  • Intelligence — IQ
  • Training — Continuing education and professional training is almost always documented.
  • Certifications — Many jobs require or recognize certification by an independent body.
  • Experience — Important to many hiring managers but I think it’s overrated.

Other attributes that are key factors most hiring managers look for that are qualitative and not as easily measured or verified include:

  • Honesty and integrity — Sometimes referred to as “Doing the right thing when no one is looking”
  • Reliability, aka dependability. Showing up on time, fully completing assignments, etc.
  • Perseverance — Tenacity in seeing a job through in the face of challenges
  • Goal orientation
  • Collaborative, team-oriented personality
  • “Likability” — This one is highly subjective but we have all met people that just seemed easy to like. Often they are extroverted and affable and just put us at ease. Or they exude a quiet confidence while remaining humble. Some call this the “it” factor as in “I can’t really identify a specific trait in her but she just has it”. (More on this in a follow up post)
  • Soft skills, often referred to as Emotional Intelligence or EQ. There are behavioral instruments that indicate a person’s EQ and they can be very helpful for a leader evaluating “fit” and “chemistry” when adding people to a team, especially when close interaction and collaboration among team members are required for team success.

Be sure to include all of the attributes you can bring to a position and to an organization that will make you a top choice. This is no time to be bashful about your best product — you!

Frank Manfre



Develop a Career Strategic Plan to identify and land the job or launch the business you have always wanted. Enjoy a career with a high “psychic salary”.

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Frank Manfre

Business & career coach w/ 35 years experience in leadership roles in for profit and nonprofit organizations focused on developing leaders & org health