Originally published on Inside OPS
Selling yourself is a necessary part of finding a job; but, if you were raised to believe humility is a virtue, it can feel like having a tooth pulled.
How do you promote yourself without sounding arrogant?
Follow these tips to share your wins without sounding like a windbag.
1. Keep a brag file
A brag file is a document where you track your achievements. When someone compliments you on your work, a project you’ve played a key role in succeeds, or you overcome a challenge, put it in the brag file.
Review this file before attending networking events and applying for jobs to remind yourself of the difference you make.
2. Focus on outcomes, not qualities
Instead of puffing yourself up with empty descriptions like talented and team player, dip into your brag file for evidence of these or any other qualities that apply to you.
When you tell stories that focus on the transformations you helped create, your brilliance naturally shines through.
3. Find the I in we
With group efforts, it’s tempting to give your team all the credit. While it’s fine to recognize your colleagues, don’t forget to point out your specific role.
For example, rather than saying, “We organized a conference for 2,000 delegates,” talk about how you booked 12 high-profile speakers under tight deadlines or kept the event under budget.
4. Be brief
You don’t have to tell your entire life story or share every step of your accomplishments. Think about what your audience would find relevant and stick to that. If they want more details, they’ll ask.
5. Take an interest in others
People take an interest in people who take an interest in them.
Whether writing a cover letter, conducting an information interview, or being interviewed for a job, always show that you’ve researched your audience. In group networking situations, be curious and ask questions.
Remember: successful self-promotion isn’t about boastfulness. It’s about having the confidence to let your actions speak for themselves.