Personal Branding with Your Word Cloud

So what’s a personal word cloud? 

It’s a colorful image made up of special words that reflect the real you.

Email Size Word Cloud

It’s makes you look sharp on all your 21st century media (web site, social networking, email).

And it’s also an easy tool to help you illuminate your goals as you manage your career.

In this article, you will see some examples and get detailed instructions.

First, how did I stumble on this? I was discussing my resume with Martin Buckland of, and we touched on “personal word clouds” as a new concept.   

Martin coaches and creates resumes … starting with a single powerful compelling word that reflects one’s personal brand. 


That task he leaves as my homework – to come up with that ONE word that illuminates a whole career.

It was so hard for me to settle on a single word.  So I took a initial word list, and added words using font-size and boldness as emphasis.  I ended up with MANY words of different colors, sizes, and styles.

Homework was due and I had no ONE word. “It just looks like a word cloud”, I apologised for not having chosen just one word.

” Hey”, said Martin “why don’t you create a real word cloud out of this.  You can use it to differentiate your email signature. You are more technical so you do it and show me how”.

Then his clincher:  “This is great, I could use it to brand my emails too”.

Wow. That’s how Martin turned my lemon into sweet lemonade.

Let me share with you what I did from there.

George Ridout - Lead and Learn


Best Social Networking for Your Career – part 1

At last week’s HAPPEN meeting in Burlington, the guest speakers ran a workshop on online social networking. It impacts your job search in many significant ways.

Martin Buckland of and Barbara Mackie, experts in career use of social media, ran a pragmatic and eye-opening seminar, peppered with audience participation:

  • Martin Buckland, Executive Career Management Services Professional at Elite Resumes
  • Barbara Mackie, professional Social Media expert, Blogger, and Editor at Elite Resumes 

The half-day session included live access to the sites that Barbara and Martin highlighted:

  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Blogging Sites such as WordPress (which hosts Martin’s blog)

At one point, Martin asked the group to hold their palms together and pray for an internet connection – and we got one!  

Best practices and plenty of tips were the outcome of the session. The audience was a mixed one in terms of experience in online social networking sites, but this was accommodated well by the workshop facilitators.  Tips for everybody.

The overall message: for Pete’s sake,

  1. BE SURE TO establish an online presence for yourself and you will get not just noticed but noticed by the people who you can associate with for mutual value.
  2. Establish a strategy for yourself with social media 


For LinkedIn

  • KEY TIP: Status updates every day. Rotate among many relevant and apt statuses that you have in a word document that cover your activities and your job search intent in various words
  • TIP: Compose status updates that are a bit seductive or even compelling, such as “Likes a challenge to motivate teams” or “Seeks a new xyz opportunity accomplishing abc”
  • TIP: Customize your LinkedIn URL
  • TIP: Visit the LinkedIn Learning Center – click on all tabs to learn
  • BEST PRACTICE for easy of finding you: Put your LinkedIn profile on your resume and on you email signature line
  • BEST PRACTICE for ease of matching up:  Put Your Whole Resume on your profile as text
  • BEST PRACTICE for Recruiter Invites: Always YES invites to connect with them, sending a nice message such as “Thank You for looking at me” and tell them a little about yourself and how you can be of value such as “Actively engaged in job search looking for opportunity in mechanical engineering in xyz area & I also have an MBA”

Martin and Barb had much more to say as they are both a wealth of gems of information.

I highly recommend that you visit elite resumes and catch up with the changes for yourself.