Whether you’re a graphic designer or a construction worker, you’ll need a portfolio which describes your work vividly. Whether you want to attract new customers, show your potential employer what you’re capable of doing, or make yourself visible online, creating an excellent portfolio that shows off who you are professionally is definitely a great investment into your career in general.
However, most people overdo it when it comes to making a portfolio. It’s quite important to know how not to cross that thin line and fulfill your portfolio with irrelevant nuisance, but still manage to throw in enough details which will make you stand out. Following through the next rules will help you achieve that, for sure!
1. Be Selective about What Projects You Include
When a potential customer, employer or your interviewer visits your portfolio online or checks out its physical version, you can be confident that they don’t want to read your full bio. Including absolutely everything there’s to know about you into your portfolio will make it hard to read, and each of these three groups of people that can make a significant change in your career won’t even get past the first third. So, make a list of your most successful projects, make a variety of small and big ones so you don’t create a pattern by accident, and pick out one of them for which you’re capable of reconstructing the creative process standing behind it. That should do it!
2. Count in Your Representative Skills
Listing out your projects isn’t enough – the next step is speaking (in this case, writing) about what you can do. Your previous experience, no matter if you have just got off college or you want to change your job, is quite important. However, you mustn’t allow yourself to do this part by bragging about what you can do. It’s quite relevant to format your sentences properly – the first part should be about the duties you had, and the second part should be about the skills you had developed. This way, you’ll be able to mention everything important without looking like you’re feeling overconfident about your skills. Also, make a short list of all the accomplishments and goals you have managed to complete – this will show how determined you are.
3. The Reasons Why You’d Contribute
If you’re applying for a certain position at a company you’d like to work for, you need to find a way to convince them why they should find you necessary. Doing research about any type of company is a lot easier today – all you really need to do is some browsing online. Therefore, don’t be lazy, dig into their history and learn everything there’s to know about the way they do business. This way, you’ll be able to tell your interviewer exactly why you’d be the perfect person for the job, and this is just another thing that will make you stand out in the crowd.
4. Less Is More
Try to apply this rule to absolutely everything regarding your new portfolio. For example, your sentences shouldn’t be longer than ten to twelve words, and don’t avoid using bullet points and numbering, because these two options will definitely make your text look neater. Furthermore, you should avoid using big words for no reason whatsoever, especially if you don’t really know their true meaning. Use your own language, be professional throughout and you’ll be just fine.
If you’re inserting, pictures or different kind of sketches into your portfolio, you should be equally selective about them like you were with your projects. Also, don’t forget to add a short description to each of them – by having only one type of visual content, you risk making your overall portfolio appearance dull.
5. Give It a Personal Touch
It’s personalization time! By adding a personal part to your portfolio, you’re actually allowing it to reflect your personality, so start thinking about the appropriate short story which will explain why you’re in this particular business and how you intend to improve it. If you had any personal project, you should definitely include those, because they’ll show that your main motivation isn’t money, but passion towards your profession. Likewise, you should add in several distinctive elements, like some awards that your projects won – this will show you’re willing to work hard in order to be acknowledged.
6. Create Two Versions
Having a physical and an online version of your portfolio is a quite smart thing to do for yourself. Sure, it’ll take a bit more of your time, but you can count on the fact it’ll pay off. Being prepared for several different situations in advance is a quality your potential customers or employers will definitely appreciate. Building an online version makes you widely available, and by inserting a couple of social media buttons, you’ll make sharing easy (which shouldn’t be underestimated). The fact is that 90% of the human brain responds to something visual and tangible, so it makes a huge difference if you show up to your interview with a physical representation of your work.
7. Work on the Presentation Itself
You need to know how to sell yourself; your work, skills and a desire to improve and perfect in general. No matter how great you are in what you do, no one will hire you if you can’t speak about it properly. Most people decide to turn to various tutorials on how to prepare for an interview, but following those tutorials through might just be the thing that makes you feel anxious during the actual interview, because you’re probably trying not to leave any of the steps out. However, if you try out a different approach, and focus on developing your presentation skills in general, because that’s exactly what any interview is all about – presenting your work in the right light.
That’s it really. Once you make a portfolio like this, you won’t have to redo it ever again, you’ll just have to fill it in with additional accomplishments as you complete them. It might be a lot to take in right now, but if you take enough time and really devote yourself to this project, I’m sure it’ll turn out great!