Do you feel loved? Many technical writers feel unloved. They feel they don’t get the respect they deserve. I hear this on LinkedIn and Facebook: “people don’t respect the work I do.” Well, if that’s the case, here are a few ways to get more respect and move into a more rewarding career.
A website lets you highlight your strengths. And unlike fixed formats on job portals that millions of others also use, you can use the website to showcase your best skills for the job that you covet. Are you a graphic artist or photographer? A fancy portfolio is a must to show off your project work. Are you a researcher with many awards and papers presented? Just add a page with all your publications, appearances etc. with hyperlinks to the actual content.
Don’t discount any companies or positions. What appears to be a dull, dry job could lead to something much more interesting, once you’re hired and on the inside. You won’t know about all the opportunities until you get in there and start talking to people.
Re-Positioning Yourself – technical writers with 5+ years experience should/could be looking at re-positioning themselves as Content Strategist, Web Content consultants and other roles where your ‘knowledge’ in more valued. This is where the real money is. It may take you 12-18 months to make this transition but once there the rewards, respects, and career development make it worthwhile.
Social media is incredibly crucial. A few years ago social media seemed like a flash in the pan. Today, though, it is really obvious that social media is not going anywhere. Make sure you have a Facebook account for your business enterprise and for yourself. Additionally, it’s essential to have Jeff Machin profiles and profiles in all of the other social media portals that relate best to your pursuits and/or your niche. People are more comfortable leaving comments and initiating contact through social media than they do through emails or other forms of communication.
Build linkedin profiles more trust. Being connected to more people, you will again be contributing to the trust factor of your profile. People would rather do business with a contact of a connection or friend than with somebody whom they know nothing about. When you come across somebody you know, think about whether you can provide them with a testimonial, and then ask if they could do the same for you. Testimonials are important for trust building.
Help others grow their business. The best way to push yourself forward is to help others. Not sure how to help other people? Ask who their perfect client would be and make an introduction.
Third, I read an article recently that surveyed hiring mangers and found that the top 3 bullet points of a job description were what they were most interested in finding in their ideal candidate. I think that’s probably true from my hiring days. So don’t get bent out of shape if there are points toward the bottom you don’t match. Read the overall posting-get a gist of who their ideal candidate would be-read between the lines and address that in your cover letter and resume.