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BIOS TO EMPOWER YOU

A Shorthand Guide


A corporate CEO once questioned my suggestion that she prepare bios for each
board member and department head in her start-up international company.  
I never heard from her after submitting this tongue-in-cheek laundry list
addressing the issue.  I've always wondered which of the reasons
for avoiding executive bios concerned her...

      REASONS FOR HAVING A STRONG BIOGRAPHY
      Immediate Need
      
~  ​Potential clients are knocking on your door.
     
~  Potential investors are analyzing your organization.
     
~  Your small business lender has requested a comprehensive business plan.
      
~    A member of the national media wants to interview you.

      Mid-Range Planning
       
~  Eventually you will need to complete that business plan you've been thinking
             about.
       
~  Clients are comparing you to a competitor who was recently featured in the
             media.

        Long-Range Planning
  ​    
~  You will become successful, and people unknown to you now will want to know
               about you, so you had better start checking the facts you've already forgotten.

        
REASONS TO AVOID HAVING A BIO
        ~  Your name is never misspelled, and you are never misquoted.
       
~  Statistics about you and your business are never cited in error.
       
~  You have no competition, your clients will never ask about the organization's                           management.
       
~  Your primary investors are very private, and you do not want to disclose any                           information.
       
~  Despite their talent, some principal employees have weak education, training
              or experience.
       
~  You don't need to impress anyone, and don't care about any gossip afloat.

       
WHEN WILL YOU SEEK AN EMPOWERING BIO?
        ~  You have just been introduced incorrectly?
       
~  When incorrect data have been published and widely distributed?
       
~  When your sales team needs to proclaim your superiority?
       
~  When someone notices the gap under "Management Team" in your business
              plan?

       
WHAT CONSTITUTES A STRONG BIO?

        Whether you are preparing to deliver a single compound-sentence self-introduction,
        or provide a page-long entry to a professional publication, consider the bios of your               peers.  What have you enjoyed?  What bored you?  What makes you curious about
        the subject?  Does one aspect remain memorable, positively?  Whether you do the
        work yourself, or hire a wordsmith, you need to analyze the results in both print and               oral presentation.  So, listen to yourself read it aloud and then have someone read it
        to you.  Consider including the following desirable elements:

       
~  Industry-appropriate vocabulary that does not leave your audience questioning                       jargon.
       
~  Warmth, even humor, without self-deprecation.
       
~  Short, clear sentences.  Strong verb clauses that don't rely on "very" and "really."
       
~  Highlight of a unique quality and/or pertinent skill.
       
~  Mention of an outstanding award or special recognition.


Whether you are in business or not, consider when
it might be useful to have a bio at the ready:


         ~  You need an introduction for a large gathering of friends or colleagues.
         
~  Your industry is honoring your successful career.
         
~  Your family and friends need to prepare your eulogy.

For tips on strengthening your wordsmithing skills, visit Jeanne’s blog:  
Blog.ImaginingsWordpower.com









Copyright 2015 @ Imaginings. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2015 @ Imaginings. All rights reserved.