Creating a professional-looking profile that reflects exactly what you do and what you offer represents one of the main strategies to meet clients at ProZ.com
Your ProZ.com profile is your business card, the first impression colleagues and potential clients will have of you when they find you on the site. Hence, it is important that you complete your profile and update it regularly to ensure that you get the most out of your ProZ.com experience. You can edit your profile information via your Profile Updater
ProZ.com profiles are organized in such a way that they allow members to complete them step-by-step, mostly with the addition or selection of two or three words per field. However, there are certain profile areas that call for some creativity. One such area is the "About me" section, located almost at the bottom of your profile page
But, what should the "About me" section of a profile contain?
To start answering this question, let's see what type of information should not be included in the "About me" section of profiles:
- The languages in which you offer services.
- The services you offer.
- Your working fields (i.e. every field in which you offer services).
- Past projects or sample translations.
- Your CV / resume.
- Feedback from clients.
- Images that do not relate to your professional activity.
The reason why it is suggested that none of these items are included in the "About me" section of profiles is because all these already have a corresponding field in profiles. In other words, the language pairs in which you offer services should already be listed in the "Working languages" section of your profile (top, left corner); the services you offer should be listed in the "Services" section; working fields should be reported in the "Expertise" area; and so on.
If you were to include any of these items in both, the corresponding section / field and the "About me" section of your profile, you would be asking your potential client to read the same information twice, probably giving the impression that you do not have much to say about you as a professional and so you need to duplicate information to make your profile look complete and attractive.
Now that we have determined what should not be included in the "About me" section of profiles, let's try to determine what would be appropriate content for this section.
Considering that the "About me" section is located at the bottom of profiles, and if you have chosen to show standardized information in your profile (using the "Preferred display format" option located at the top, left corner of your profile page), it would be fair to say that, by the time a potential client gets to the "About me" section of your profile, they have already read information about your professional qualifications.
So, what does a potential client want to read about in the "About me" section of a profile? A potential client that stops at the "About me" section of a profile wants to read about you!
This includes your name --if you feel comfortable with sharing your real name with profile visitors; your translation education in detail (if any); why and how you decided to become a language professional; how you handle projects on a daily, weekly, monthly and even yearly basis; and your relationship with and experience in your fields of expertise (including any hobbies you may have in connection with these fields), among other more personal --not private-- details.
Let's see some good examples*:
By Tomás Cano Binder, CT
By Sheila Wilson
As you can see from the examples above, the "About me" section of profiles supports HTML (tags used to add style and format to text --bold, italics, color, hyper-links, etc.). For a complete description on how to use HTML tags to give style and format to the content of your "About me" section, check this tutorial
. You can also localize the content of your "About me" section into as many languages as you want via the localization page
Give these tips a try and contact site staff
at any time if you need further help.
* Examples were taken from real ProZ.com profiles with the permission of profile owners.