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  • Julia Beyer 11:21 pm on May 14, 2014 Permalink  

    Teaching Storytellers How to Tell their Own Story 

    Students who are studying the fields of public communication, film, and journalism are excellent storytellers. I have been working with students in the School of Communication as a Career Advisor for three and a half years and I have observed a lot in that time. Regardless of the communication medium (web, video, print, in-person), students can be persuasive, paint a clear picture, and understand the A-B-Cs of storytelling. But, when it comes to telling their own story—the one most important to their own career—many fall flat.

    Communication students have really honed the skills to tell other peoples’ stories, but have not learned to apply these same skills to developing their own story. The story they share when introducing themselves to someone they never met at a job fair or networking reception. The stories they write about in a cover letter for a job or internship. The stories they highlight in an interview when making a case for why they are qualified for a particular position. Time and time again, I am surprised how communication students have meticulously researched and thought through presenting someone else’s story, but have seemed to have forgotten this approach when it comes to discussing their own work/background.

    Why is this the case and what can be done to overcome it? Many students feel uncomfortable with the idea of selling their skills at a networking event or job interview because it feels inauthentic or because they don’t want to brag about their background and/or accomplishments. So I am including the following tips:

    Five Steps for Developing Your Own Story for Storytellers:
    Step 1: Reflect. Think about your strengths and weaknesses, your passions, and what you are good at. Take an inventory of all your interests and abilities.

    Step 2: Develop some stories to demonstrate your top skills or abilities that are relevant to the position you are applying for or the person you are speaking with.

    Step 3: Make sure your stories have a succinct beginning, middle, and end– yes, this is very basic, but, you’d be surprised how many students miss this—use the CAR technique which stands for “Context, Action, Result.” Set the scene of the story by giving some context, discussing your specific role or challenge for the action, and then conclude with an outcome—this could be a learning outcome or result.

    Step 4: Practice telling your story. Regardless of the medium, whether you are writing your stories, telling them in person, or in a video interview, be sure to take advantage of practicing with a Career Advisor, mentor or friend.

    Step 5: Develop Confidence. The more you do this, the easier it gets. Suddenly, you don’t feel so awkward about talking about yourself and it doesn’t feel superficial because you are sharing some authentic stories with professionals in your field about your background and experiences.

    As a public relations professional, filmmaker, or journalist, are you drawn to people who have their own unique voice or story to share? Now is the time to develop your story.

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  • Julia Beyer 8:58 pm on January 28, 2013 Permalink  

    Your Online Brand 

    How you represent yourself online has become a critical part of the job or internship search, so this past summer, the Career Center created a new section of their website called online branding.  Research shows that 92% of employers use social media to recruit talent and 73% have hired a candidate identified or introduced through social media.

    Over the course of the semester, the SOC Career Advisors will be creating blog posts about Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to complement the online branding section and to help you to enhance your online presence.   Please be sure to check out our sliderocket presentation on online branding.

    We begin with a few tips here:

    • Assess your online presence & improve your existing content
    • Use Social Media (to identify ideal employers)
    • Use Visual Marketing (identify ways in which to display examples of your work online)

    Most students I speak with have heard of LinkedIn, but either do not have a profile or do not really know how to use it.  Why should you use LinkedIn?

    According to Jobvite, 89% of employers have made a hire through LinkedIn.

    Not everyone has a Twitter account, but did you know that Twitter exceeds Facebook for Social Recruiting (BullhornReach.com)?

    • Recruiters add more Twitter followers to their network per week than Facebook
    • Twitter drives almost twice as many job views per job as Facebook and three times more applications per job.

    Haven’t thought of using Facebook for professional purposes?  Here are some things to consider (Jobvite, 2012)

    • 52% of job seekers use Facebook to help find work
    • Facebook content is most likely to cause job candidates trouble

    Stay tuned for tips on all three social media sites this semester!

     
  • Julia Beyer 5:36 pm on April 4, 2011 Permalink
    Tags: senior, stress   

    Managing Stress for Seniors in Transition to Life After College 

    For those of you who are graduating, you are experiencing a range of emotions which include something along the spectrum of excitement and some stress/anxiety.  It is normal to have these feelings, but each individual experiences these emotions to varying degrees.   I would like to share some tips with you to help you make a confident step forward in the direction of the transition to life after college.

    Try to keep things in perspective; sometimes things are not as bad as they seem!

     

    • Stay in touch with your classmates.  They are your support network and they are going through some of the same challenges as you and they may even be able to help you with your next move (either job or apartment).
    • Share your concerns with a mentor or someone you trust who has more experience (could be a professor or someone who works in your field of interest).  They will not be able to solve all your problems, but they may be able to shed some light on a concern or help you come up with a new idea or approach to tackling an issue.
    • Strive to find the balance in your life. If you are feeling overwhelmed or too stressed, take a step back and take a break from what you are doing.  This can help you gain some perspective and recharge your batteries.
    • Utilize all the resources at your disposal on campus including the Career Center, the Counseling Center, the Student Health Center and even the Kay Spiritual Life Center has a support group for graduating seniors that meets every Sunday at 4pm.
    • Try not to compare yourself to your classmates; focus on what your goals are because there will always be someone who has more or less experience than you.
    • Focus on the factors that are within your control such as your energy level, your overall attitude, and your work ethic.  Put your best foot forward when solving problems.
    • Keep family members and loved ones involved and up to date on your life.  These are the times when you need your support network the most.  Just remember that you are never alone and that sharing your concerns with others can sometimes help lift the burden.

    Congratulations on your graduation!

     
  • Julia Beyer 7:01 pm on February 9, 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , Reel, ,   

    Finding Work in the Film & Video Industry 

    The recession has hit the film and video industry hard. More than ever before, aspiring filmmakers must know how to effectively network, search for jobs and freelance opportunities, and have their resume stand out in a sea of applications.

    I recently attended a panel event sponsored by the Television, Internet, and Video Association of D.C. (TIVA) to garner useful career tips and advice from professionals in the industry. Read on to learn how you can gain a competitive edge in your job search.

    (More …)

     
  • Julia Beyer 8:48 pm on January 31, 2011 Permalink
    Tags: communications, , ,   

    What are employers looking for in the communications field? 

    I was very fortunate to have the opportunity to participate in the 9th annual NYC site visit trip and meet with employers in the journalism, public relations, and film industries.  I wanted to take this opportunity to share a little bit about what I learned from each site visit, so here’s the culmination of advice broken down into three categories including personality characteristics, trends and skill sets:

    Personality Characteristics:

    • Display presence, entrepreneurial attitude and intelligence
    • Embrace change and technology
    • Generate big and new ideas and advocate for these ideas
    • Hit the ground running; be ambitious
    • Be passionate, a  good communicator, and persistent
    • Be the first one in the office and the last one to leave
    • Show initiative and be willing to volunteer for new projects (More …)
     
  • Julia Beyer 11:10 pm on January 10, 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , ,   

    Meet Julia Beyer 

    Hello! My name is Julia Beyer and I am the new career advisor for the School of Communication and I thought I would take this opportunity to introduce myself.  In my first couple of weeks, I have enjoyed a warm welcome from the Career Center in addition to the faculty and staff at SOC.

    Before AU, I advised graduate students in international affairs at The George Washington University for four years.  In my time there, I helped students and alumni with their career development through advising, programming, and marketing tools such as a monthly newsletter.  I look forward to applying many of the skills I have developed in my previous position to students in the field of communication.

    As part of my introduction to the Career Center, I have met with several faculty and staff in SOC and I thought I would share the following ideas with you: (More …)

     
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