Each year, approximately 250,000 people immigrate to Canada, hoping to fulfill their dreams. But once they arrive, sadly, their optimism dims and their dreams begin to fade.
University educated professionals, the most desirable immigrants, face not only the expected adjustments to Canada’s climate, languages and culture, but an unexpected struggle to find suitable employment.
They are shocked to find their foreign education credentials discounted by 30 percent, and their professional experience discounted by 70 percent, when measured by employers against comparable North American or English speaking University credentials and experience.
New Canadians also face language literacy barriers. If prospective employers find their resumes difficult to understand, they won’t be chosen to interview, no matter how well qualified they are.
Social and cultural barriers present additional hurdles for weary immigrants to leap. These obstacles are easy to miss and trip over, as they are cloaked behind the invisible shield of discrimination; invisible because overtly, it does not exist.
Organizations have social/cultural quirks as well, which aren’t disclosed in job postings. Immigrant applicants often don’t understand why they don’t fit in. They are puzzled when they either hear nothing, or receive an impersonal “thanks, but no thanks” letter informing them that, ‘…other candidates qualifications more closely match the requirements of this position.’
The numerous obstacles New Canadian job seekers face can be overcome through the Authentic Personal Branding process. Instead of triggering cultural biases, a personal brand makes applicants stand out for all the right reasons.
1. Presenting foreign credentials and experience in foreign formats increases the risk of rejection. A personal brand makes a candidate’s international education and work experience culturally relevant and desirable. It demonstrates the person’s unique value to prospective employers.
2. An Authentic Personal Brand equips job seeker with the tools they need to view their job search as a proactive sales campaign, not a passive application process. A skilled, experienced personal brand strategist helps immigrants face the facts head on. They’re pitching themselves to a target market loaded with biases and objections. It’s not inclined to buy into what they’re selling, even though it desperately needs the many benefits they can deliver.
3. The personal branding process also shows candidates how to stop selling themselves with features, and start selling themselves with benefits. So rather than explaining “how” they will fulfill the role’s responsibilities, job seekers demonstrate how they use their skills and savvy to solve problems, achieve business objectives, and deliver tangible value to the organization.
4. An Authentic Personal Brand adjusts applicants approaches to ensure they come across as:
- appealing, memorable, and loaded with desirable benefits
- ready, willing, and able to solve problems and achieve goals
- believable, reliable, and trustworthy
Job seekers only get one chance to make a first impression – in writing or in person.
Most applicants don’t have an objective understanding of how they come across. The personal branding process provides an accurate analysis that informs job seekers whether they are easy or difficult to understand; approachable or reserved, and so on.
With repeated rejection, it’s natural to build up defensive emotional armor, which, instead of providing protection, keeps others from seeing the real person. The personal branding process exposes the vibrant individual, stripping away armor and artificial veneers, boosting their confidence and reinforcing their strengths.
An Authentic Personal Brand increases the odds that a candidate will be chosen.
By uncovering the needs of the prospective employer, and the position they’re applying for, the branded applicant gains the power to match each need with one of their skills and benefits. This practice quickly positions them as the employer’s ‘best choice’ candidate.
It takes qualified, specific research, expertise and a robust process to develop an Authentic Personal Brand, but the payoff is measurable and enduring, as has been proven by thousands of successful professionals.