I recently sat in on a teleseminar with salary negotiating guru Jack Chapman, author of “How to Make $1,000 a Minute in Salary Negotiations.” I regularly recommend Jack’s book to my clients – and it is a useful tool for every job hunter.

When Jack was asked how branding plays into salary negotiating, he responded with “strong brands demand greater compensation. Commodities compete on price while strong brands are at a premium.” Are you a commodity (competing on what you did or what you do) or are you a strong and compelling brand (competing on your market differentiation and value to the marketplace)?

First impressions are critical … if you are relying on years of experience and key words in a resume – or – on knowledge, experience, and education in an interview, you are a commodity. You are a strong brand when you compete on compelling and indisputable value.

People make decisions in life – and in the hiring process – based on emotion. And decisions about the brands with which we choose to associate are incredibly emotional. An assessment about you is typically made within the first 3-5 minutes of an interview. Think of the power your brand brings into that interview. They probably already like you based on the connection they feel – which is based on who they already believe you to be.

A strong brand is a powerful weapon!

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