Everyone spends so much time worrying about their resume, cover letter, interview prep, online personal branding, and numerous other job search tools. But many people forget the most commonly misused career tool of them all: a timeless professional headshot.
Because in the end, a selfie taken on your smartphone that represents who you are now, won’t grow and continue to represent your brand.
We asked several members of the Young Entrepreneur Council to relate their experiences with a timeless professional headshot.
Here’s what they had to say:
Think About Your Personal Brand
Have you ever noticed how some professionals will wear the same clothes during their presentations? They have a certain look that represents their personal brand. What’s your personal brand? More importantly, do you have the data and experience to create one? I remember when I shaved my beard and a few of my clients celebrated. I understand my personal brand far more today then I did then.
Don’t Be Too Trendy
Adding personality to the headshot can make it more appealing and successful but avoid anything in the frame that is too topical or trendy. Wearing anything trendy, and in a year or so the picture will feel dated. Same goes for any trendy filter applied to the photo. Personality is OK, but keep it simple and you can use it for years.
Ideally choose a place with good lighting, a solid background and avoid wearing all black, white or red. Then, take a moment to find your mindset where you are most comfortable and content. You will project those thoughts and feeling subconsciously. Of the photos, best ones are those that project confidence yet gives off a feeling of being relaxed and natural
Understand That You Get What You Pay For
Simply put, once you’ve figured out the sort of mood and personality you want your headshot to convey, set aside some funds to hire a professional photographer. No matter how skilled you think you are with a camera, it’s always better to bring in a pro. They’ll be able to capture you far better than you would capture yourself, and at the end of the day, it will be money well spent.
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Business Collective.
Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.