Do you have a professional biography ready to hand out as needed? An easy way to provide additional details about yourself, and fantastic information to include on your website, professional biographies can sometimes be hard to write about yourself for a couple of reasons:
- Sometimes it can be hard to identify your achievements.
- You want to make yourself sound impressive but not conceited.
- A lot of people aren’t sure what the right mixture of personal and professional is.
When I’m writing a professional biography for a client or myself, I use a 4-step process:
- Make note of the information I want included. Here’s the list of details I start with:
- List your post-high school education and include areas of study, colleges or trade schools, dates of graduation or certifications. Include any special classes or on-going education, work-shops etc. that are directly pertinent to your field/line of work.
- Make note of your work history with your current company. Include the date you began working and any professional highlights of your career there.
- List any awards, recognition, or honors you received in the last 5 years.
- List any professional organizations or affiliations you have (networking groups, clubs, trade groups etc.)
- List any personal organizations or affiliations you have (volunteer work, community groups etc.)
- Write down hobbies you have, sports you play, special talents, places you like to travel to, etc.
- Make note of your family including spouse or significant other, children (include ages), and pets.
- Any other information about yourself you want to make sure to include.
- Go through the list and turn the bullet points into sentences. Try to combine items that are related (such as an award you received from one of your professional organizations).
- Combine the sentences into a few paragraphs that make sense. You don’t need to use everything, but try to include the most interesting and relevant information to what you’re doing now. It’s usually best to put the work-related highlights first and the personal tidbits at the very end.
- Read through your professional biography a couple of times, and make sure you proofread.
You might also want to have a friend or family member that knows you well read through your professional biography to make sure you didn’t miss anything important or accidentally misrepresent yourself.