In the world of fashion, a stylist is one who is specialized in designing and managing a person’s appearance: personal style, choice of clothes, accessories and more are all within the realm of the stylist’s expertise. A stylist knows all of the style elements that can give you guts and self-confidence, while ensuring that you will not go unnoticed! Stylists are passionate about coming up with personalized looks for their clients that reflect the person’s values and tastes while also respecting their budget.
The stylist’s goal is to help their client move comfortably through their day-to-day life feeling their best, while also projecting an image that they want to show the world. A stylist may be called upon to update a client’s wardrobe entirely, or simply offer fresh insights on how to wear the clothes and accessories they already have.
Much like a stylist, an orientation counselor can help you develop a personal brand and image by helping you discover your own strengths and guiding you on how best to reveal them in a professional context. They can also help you establish your “professional signature” by identifying what makes you stand out in your field. Finally, the orientation counselor can also educate you about the skills that are sought-after in your preferred field and how you can obtain them.
That being said, before developing a professional image you will first need to reflect on the characteristics that make you unique. A good understanding of yourself will allow you to highlight your strengths and talents within your current job, or to potential employers. An orientation counselor can also help you with this. Among the many elements that are associated with self-knowledge, some include:
– Your interests, personality traits and values;
– Your achievements and successes;
– The role or roles that you’d like to take on professionally;
– The industry or industries that you’re interested in working in;
– The type of organization you’d like to work for and the career path you envision for yourself;
– The working conditions you’re looking for and any other pertinent details.
Once these criteria have been established, the orientation counselor will invite you to explore the options available and to help you make an informed decision. For example, some people may choose to focus on their education, while others may choose to enter the workforce.
The next step is to come up with the tools you need to present your professional image, including your CV, cover letter, and your professional social media profiles. The quality of these pieces of content and the way you present them will be crucial to your success, since they will demonstrate your experience, your ability to synthesize information and your professional style. Together, these documents must highlight your strengths and show how you will apply them to the requirements of the job. If you already have a job that you enjoy and would like to evolve with, an orientation counselor can help you create a professional development plan to help you improve your existing skills or acquire new ones.
Ultimately, it takes more than knowledge of self, a strong work ethic and the ability to rise to a challenge to succeed – you also need to know how to show your value. As the saying goes, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” Knowing this, it’s a wise idea to pay close attention to your professional image and brand, and all the minute details associated with it. The impression you leave with the people you meet could very well impact your professional future — so take the time to care for yourself!
By Mélanie Grégoire, M. Sc., RVP, co-president, and Fanny Smolsky, orientation counselor and CRHA