November 28, 2007

How am I dealing with it? Trials, Tribulations and Advice

Posted in Job Hunt, Maria, Transitions, Young Professionals tagged , , , , at 2:50 pm by Maria

I am the CEO of me. Chris Brogan told me that. Many others have asked me “what’s your brand?” What are the three or four word that synthesize “you”? When Googled, do you know what comes up about you? When I asked the group attending the new media job search session at PodCamp Boston 2 what advice they had for me as I begin my hunt for life-after-school, I was told to create a marketing campaign — with ME as the product.

I knew that a cover letter is supposed to “sell” you, but is a marketing campaign a little over-kill? In the world of new media — the answer is unequivocally no. But making a campaign about yourself is much easier said than done (to be cliche). During a traditional job hunt, you figure out what you might be interested in doing, find a position that offers that, then try to figure out what the employer wants from you and you try to package yourself in a way to make yourself look like you fit the part regardless of whether you actually do or not. That seems so easy compared to what it seems I’m up against now. I actually have to know who I am. Three or four little words that synthesize the essence that is me.

I attended Jeff Pulver’s Real time social media breakfast this morning. I knew in advance that upon arriving at S&S Restaurant and Deli in Cambridge I would have to fill out a name tag. Normally this would not be cause for panic. I have long known what my name is and even how to spell it. But this name tag required an extra piece of info: a tag-line. I needed a tag-line for myself. The horror. I fretted over this for hours last night and it finally came to me while my Herbal Essences Defunkify Shampoo tingled my scalp (it is really quite an amazing feeling. you should try it): Maria Thurrell. SuperGeek – Here to save the world. A little cheeky (like me), geeky (also like me) and six words long (verbose – just like me). While I think that this fits me rather to the T, is this an image I want to present to possible future bosses? What does SuperGeek say to people who don’t know me?

Jeff Pulver told me this morning that I need to figure out what it is that I am passionate about. But I already know, I exclaimed! New Media. Public Relations. Social Activism. Way too vague was his response. Uh oh. I thought I was doing pretty good. I have to narrow it down even further?! Maybe I don’t want to grow up after all…

So, with all of this swimming around in my brain I am going to write the case study for my Organizational Structure class that is due at 6pm tonight and hope that somewhere between asleep and awake the answer will come. Or perhaps someone will clue me in.

If you know me, how would you describe me in 4 words or less (ok, I’ll give you 6)?



  1. Peter Thurrell (father) said,

    4 words to describe a woman this vast. OK:


  2. Amanda said,


  3. It’s not about brevity. Your personal brand is an expression of your core superhero power, the thing that you DO better than anyone else you know. My self-applied one is “I awaken superheroes”. What that means to me is that inside of everyone I meet is the potential for that person to be a superhero. They have the powers, they just don’t realize it, so I don’t have to grant them powers, just wake them up to who they really are.

    Have you watched Mitch Joel’s personal branding seminar?

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