Though Election Day is still a year away, the 2016 presidential primary debates are in full swing.
For the potential presidential candidates, the debates serve as an interview with the largest employer in the United States — the American people.
Through their votes, U.S. citizens are essentially hiring the next president. Who better to learn video resume tips from than the Democratic and Republican front runners, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump?
These politicians invest hours, if not months, to prepare for these debates.
You don’t necessarily need to spend months preparing your video resume, but if you want to stand out among other job applicants, you should take careful preparation before pushing the record button.
Consider these three tips to be better prepared.
1. Clean up your social media
Hillary Clinton’s emails made headlines again when two of her aides testified behind closed doors. In March, it was discovered Clinton used a personal email connected to a private server instead of a government issued email.
Clinton’s use of her personal email hurt her image and personal brand. It was a problem that could have been fixed before she announced her candidacy, but it remained unresolved. This controversy continues to impact her credibility with the American people.
What can we learn from this? Tidy up your social media.
Make sure your social media accounts don’t cast you in a negative light. Potential employers will likely investigate you if they like what they see in your video resume. A job applicant’s video resume and social media should compliment each other. When managing your social media accounts, ask yourself, “How do I want to portray myself?”
You need to deal with inappropriate pictures or posts before a potential employer comes looking. Blogger Jeff Bullas explains in his article “Why Social Media is Important for Your Career,” that the content you create on Facebook or Instagram defines you. Future employers will want to see your personal brand because you will be representing theirs.
2. Present yourself in a relatable and professional way
“I’m the granddaughter of a factory worker and the grandmother of a wonderful one-year-old child.” That was Clinton’s introduction in the most recent Democratic debate. She paints herself in a way that almost anyone could connect with.
Similarly, when recording your video resume, remember to present yourself in a relatable, yet unique way. Come up with a one sentence statement to help your potential employer gain a grasp for who you are.
Another important lesson we can learn from these candidates is how to dress. Our future president must look the part. This is why presidential candidates take the time to comb their hair and press their clothes before going on camera. Both Clinton and Trump dress to fit the role they hope to fill.
You should do the same.
While you can write your resume in your pajamas, you can’t record your video resume in them. Your appearance says something about you. As mentioned in my previous blog post, “Go paper free with a video resume” about video resumes, “dress like you would for an in-person interview. This is your first impression. Make it count.”
3. Be careful how you word things
Despite the fact that Trump has consistently been in the news for his brash comments, the public either loves him for what he says or hates him for how he says it.
Many people like Trump’s bluntness, but your future employer may not hire you if you’re not professional in your video resume.
Words have power. Your video resume may be the first time a potential employer will hear you speak. Make sure the words you say and the tone you use work in your favor.
To show off your professional side, check out my tips on what to do and what not to do as you create your video resume.
These pointers from Clinton and Trump will not only help video resume novices prepare their video resumes, but they are important skills to implement in any endeavor.
What video resume or interview tips can you learned from the 2016 presidential candidates?
I am a senior majoring in public relations and minoring in family life. After graduation, I hope to blog for a non-profit organization and continue putting pen to paper.