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It’s lucky for you, the reader, that these blogs are scheduled into my diary for every three weeks as my recent Internet fame has got me running about like a blue arse fly! Opening shopping centres, turning on Christmas lights, starring in panto! In reality, not so much BUT if my current activity on LinkedIn is anything to go by, I am on the fast track to a D-List celebrity lifestyle. For those who have been living under a rock! Or admittedly, living any other life that isn’t my own you may have missed that I broke the internet last week.
That’s right! The LinkedInsphere was reeling at the news of my engagement, who would’ve thought! Engagement = engagement! The post currently sits at time of writing; 908 likes, 72 comments and a phenomenal 168,032 views. To put that into perspective, the worlds largest stadium in Pyongyang, North Korea (course it is) has a capacity of 114,000, chuck Eden Park on top and we’re close to the number of people who have viewed my cry for recruiters. You would think that I would be swimming in candidates as a result? Can’t move for well-wishers from the Bengaluru area but usable candidates for the local market, slim. It was, however, a good exercise in terms of getting my name out there.
Unless I cobble enough together for that iced out grill I’ve always wanted, that ring will be the most expensive piece of jewelry I buy. During that process, I was reminded again that ‘people buy from people’ after meeting a number of emotionless and docile sales consultants at a number of different jewelers I met Marnin. A little Filipino woman with 10 years of professional experience and 20 years of marriage experience. Her bubbly and personable approach sprinkled with an almost compulsive outcry of “ohhhh it’s exciting” made me and my wee mum at ease. When I was a fledgling recruiter my manager used to tell me “Hays opens the door, you have to walk through it’ the idea of a personal brand was installed early on and in truth, it’s what sets us, recruiters, apart.


Personal Brand is tricky though, you may notice that a lot of my post will center around my own interest; mainly football to be fair. It’s something I care about and I personally think there is a lot of synergy between what we do and the sporting arena. The point is it’s authentic. If you see me posting about the Americas Cup in order to drum up candidates feel free to call me on my bullsh*t. I see some good examples of it in our local market and some not so great examples, sometimes from the same consultants! But if I was to offer any advice after being thrust into the spotlight by a mix of click bait and sentimentality;


Keep it truthful – You may be or may not be aware of the Didn’t Happen of the Year Awards or #DHATYA as it is mainly on twitter. Anything that starts with “overheard two people talking at the bus stop” be immediately weariful like any barbers that start with ‘Mr.’ There are a lot of LinkedIn related posts but if you’re trying to push your agenda through the hypothetical world people will call you on it.
Don’t air your dirty laundry in public – I get sent some posts from people who have blocked me and I cannot believe what I’m reading sometimes. I mean, I don’t pretend that every day is a bed of roses but I certainly won’t jump on to LinkedIn to have a whinge. Complaining about clients, candidates or the industry isn’t going to get you candidates or roles, it’s going to get you sectioned.
Try not to take sides – football teams aside it’s probably better to leave political parties and religious beliefs at home.
Avoid narcissism – By all means sell yourself, forge out an identity and solidify it BUT do not make the mistake that people give a sh*t about where you’re from, where you’re going or what time you got up to go on that run that ‘totally changed’ your perspective on things. Fun fact; when I ask a Kiwis their strengths and weaknesses 9 times out of 10, they will start with their weaknesses. My point is they don’t beat their chests or give it the biggin’ so try not to. This may be contrary to my opening statement however hopefully readers will see the difference between ironic parody and printing out T-Shirts with your name on it.
Toe the company line – It’s good that you’re exploring your individuality, like a teenager with a nose ring it’s cool and fun but just make sure to take it out for school. Your agency has its own image it wasn’t to project and if yours doesn’t marry up then there could be big problems.
Never argue in the comment section – On my first blog I got some critiques and Jon Rice had to hold me back, metaphorically of course but it was the right move. All I would’ve needed is an ‘end is nigh’ sandwich board strapped to me to complete the mad man aesthetic.


Personal Brand isn’t an exact science and even if it’s annoying and cringe-inducing it gets people talking. It’s about how you want to be perceived; as the consultant that presents the latest trends relating to their industry or the consultant posting Dilbert-esq cartoons on the funny side of JavaScript. Both are good ways of engaging and building a brand. It’s just a case of knowing your audience and staying as authentic as possible, without waffling on about yourself. Feel free to leave comments safe in the knowledge that any cutting ones will be promptly ignored while any comments on my amazing photoshopped skills will be immediately liked 😊