Lately I’ve had a slew of clients asking me to write bios – something I have been more than happy to take on, other than the obvious reasons of “Yay! I love to write” and “Yay! Clients!” (we are in business, after all).
The real reason I love writing bios is that I get to learn so much about so many interesting people. People who don’t even realize how interesting their lives are. In my interviewing process, I have found that properly developing a strong bio draws on more than a person’s awards, certifications, and accolades. Rather, I find that I am able to discover some truly amazing things about people that they would never have thought of writing down. I have had the honour of seeing people realize just how unique they are when they remember what drove them to their field, and hear stories that they will haphazardly tell, without giving any second thought to just how interesting their tale is.
But, what really gets me excited is when the people I interview remember:
1) What and why they’re passionate about their specific profession
More often than not, people go right back to their childhood when thinking about why they started their business or got into their specific field. Having interviewed doctors, lawyers, graphic artists, marketing consultants, business coaches, etc., each one is drawn back to what excited them as children. From a love of learning, sharing knowledge, satisfying a curious nature, helping others, and so on, each one said that their passion for their current profession started when they were a child, long before they ever knew what they were going to be. It’s the excitement behind their voice that reignites their love of what they are doing.
2) Why they are considered an “expert” in their field…or why they are to be trusted
It’s not necessarily all about how much experience, or how many certificates or degrees the individual has. More often than not, when people are asked, “what makes them an expert,” they focus more on what is important to them – their clients. They are driven to learn more, to provide better service, to educate clients, to just be better because they are looking to provide the best customer service possible. Each person I have interviewed simply wants to make the world better by helping one client at a time.
3) The human side of their profession
Again, this goes to the person behind the job title. People share stories of how they live customer service, volunteering, community involvement, and so on, with me. Stories that help connect to who the individual is than what the individual does. Putting clients at ease, no matter what the profession, starts at a personal level. By finding a common denominator of humanity, clients will begin to trust the individual. By learning these unique stories, I am able to better capture the person in the bio, and not just the career accomplishments and it is this “person” who resonates with an audience.
So, when you find yourself having to write a blurb about yourself – even if it’s just two sentences, focus on the “why” of what you do, rather than the “what” you do. This will help you rediscover your passion and make it easier for you to talk about yourself and your accomplishments. Your bio should not be feared, but celebrated!