March 11th, 2015/Personal/

If you happened to read the HBR article, 7 Ways to Capture Someone’s Attention, what made you want to read it? Was it the title? The image? The image is pretty gravitating. We’re image people. For us, it was the image. Then we weren’t at all disappointed by what it had to say. But would we have read it if the image did not grab our attention?

When you make the decision to read an article, a social media post, a resume or LinkedIn profile of someone you’ve not met—what do you look at first? What captures your attention? The picture. It’s proven science through eye-tracking. It’s also the first thing someone will look for when they’re reviewing your profile on a networking or job-sourcing site.

What does that profile image, that company profile, that resume headshot say about you? Your company?

For some it says, “the best shot I have was taken 7 years ago at my cousins wedding. Taffeta is my thing.” For some, there was incredible, strategic cropping to get the kids out of that Disney World picture to be able to use it. Maybe some people don’t even have that so they use a shot of the Starship Enterprise and convince themselves that it makes a statement and is quite profound.

Believe it or not, your headshot talks. And a good headshot can go a long way.

Good lighting, an expression that’s professional, yet communicative of your character, plus the right environment make a big difference.

If you don’t want someone to think you’re forever stuck in 1990, don’t use your clearly softened Glamour Shot. If you want to give someone the impression that you care about your career about as much as you care about any daily chore, spend 10 minutes to pull a picture off your phone’s camera, crop accordingly, post it, and forget it.

On the other hand, if you want to say: my appearance is important to me; how my clients and colleagues perceive me is important to me; the impression I make on others I may or may not yet know in my industry is important to me—well then, let’s capture a headshot that says exactly that.

We all have different sides to our personalities. That’s fine. That’s great! Until you really know someone, sharing some of those sides is ill advised. Sharing them with perfect strangers can deliver anything but the right impression. It’s important for your headshot to communicate your character without all of your quirks.

It’s important to also look relaxed—comfortable and confident in who and where you are. This does not mean, beer in hand, television reflection in your glasses, and it certainly does not mean your vacation apparel. We recommend dressing the part, and showing confidence by smiling with ease. That can be hard for some people. Not to worry, that’s where we come in.

Lastly, lighting and environment are key. At the end of the day, your best smile and your best suite shot in the poorly lit entry of your current employer won’t make anything other than your forehead shiny. Don’t sell yourself short at the end. Take the time to follow through to the last detail.

Professional headshots can mean big money. Big money in the form of promotions, job transitions, new clients, new hires, new perspectives. Professional headshots do not mean big SPEND. There’s a difference. If you don’t like what your current headshot is saying about you or your company, call us. We’re familiar with budgets. We’re flexible. And we do the hard parts, so we’re always easy to work with.

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