How To Write a Professional Biography About Yourself

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 24 August 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Writing a biography is an excellent way for you to illustrate your goals, personality and capabilities. There are several reasons why you might be ready to write one, whether that be to showcase your best qualities on a resume or highlight your talents on a portfolio. Learning how to write biography can better prepare you when it's time to craft one for your own purposes. In this article, we discuss how to write a professional biography in six simple steps, examine how to write a quick biography, explore examples and review helpful tips.

Related: How To Write a Personal Profile (Examples and Tips)

How to write a professional biography in 6 steps

The following six steps show you how to write a professional biography about yourself that's simple and engaging:

1. Select the name and professional honorific you're going to include

Writing this type of biography begins by choosing the right name and professional title. These designations can change depending on the purpose of your writing and the audience of the biography. For example, some people choose to use a different first name instead of their given name. Other professionals use their original last name instead of a new surname gained after marriage. You may also try to include or omit titles like MD or Medical Doctor, if they apply to you.

2. Choose whether to write your biography in first person or third person

The way you refer to yourself is important in a biography. You can decide to write it in first or third person. First person is when you use I to refer yourself. Use your name when referring to yourself in third person. Typically, it's standard to write a professional and formal biography in the third person. If you're writing a biography for work purposes, ask your manager or editor which is more appropriate.

3. Include any current job role titles or professional tags

If you're creating a biography while currently employed, list your current position or job role, such as Senior Associate or Editor. If you are unemployed and creating a biography as part of an online profile, you can list your previous role or your current expertise. For example, you could list Web Developer or Professional Graphic Designer.

4. Include your current employer or company

Identifying your current employer can help your reader get an idea of your experience, industry and whether you're currently available to work. Make sure that any companies that you include are truthful and verifiable. If you don't currently have an employer or are self-employed, you can skip this step.

5. Include your career goals and personal aspirations

For this step, clearly describe the type of career you have envisioned for yourself. If this goal is something that you definitively want, then include it. Do the same for any personal aspirations you wish to accomplish, such as learning a foreign language or taking coding lessons. Providing these details can help the reader gain a better understanding of your motivations.

Related: How To Write a Career Objective (With Examples)

6. Determine if it's appropriate to include fun or light-hearted information about yourself

In most cases, you don't have to share personal details in your biography. However, they might be a useful tool to help people understand you better. Reasons for including these details could also depend on the purpose and context for writing your biography.

Examples of common personal details in biographies include:

  • Hobbies

  • Favourite TV shows, movies or books

  • Information about family life

  • Funny details about habits or interests

  • Unique personal story

How to write a quick biography

Quick biographies are really short and direct. They are usually only a few sentences long and concise enough to serve as a brief description. Follow these steps to write a quick biography:

1. Include an introduction

Use this section to introduce who you are and any organisations associated with you. If you're self-employed, then you can simply mention your personal brand. Don't worry about including every detail. Keep it brief.

2. Include your professional background

Use this section to introduce your working experience. If you mention a title, elaborate on your most important responsibilities. Also include your most significant professional accomplishment if you have any.

3. Include your personal details

Use this section to add a personal touch to your biography. You could mention your values, beliefs, passions or goals. Mention how these traits influence your work ethic and how they relate to your professional life.

Is a biography the same as a CV?

A professional biography and a CV differ greatly from one another. A biography is more like an essay summary that highlights your most valuable skills and experience when introducing yourself to new employers or clients. The CV, which stands for curriculum vitae, is a synopsis of your academic history, work experience and qualifications.

Related: How To Write a CV Summary (With Examples)

Examples of professional biographies

The following are examples of professional biographies:

Third-person professional profile

Here's a sample of a biography in third person:

John Chan is a Human Resources specialist with a decade of successful experience in hiring and employee management. John specialises in Human Resource technologies and regularly attends national training sessions to showcase new HR tech trends, such as self-service, wellness apps and people analytics tools. A strong believer in the power of positive thinking in the workplace, John regularly develops internal wellness campaigns to assist employees with effective mental health techniques.

First person professional profile

Here's a sample of a biography in first person:

My name is Wendy Leung and I've run a successful freelance business for five years as an art therapist for children. I've always loved art and dreamed of working as a child psychologist, that's why I studied for a PhD in Art Psychology from the Hong Kong Institute of Higher Learning. I specialise in working with children between the ages of 5 and 12. I believe that art expresses the soul and when we can tap into that creativity, we can uncover so much about who someone is and how they feel. In my free time, I enjoy painting natural scenery.

Quick biography

Here's a sample of a quick biography:

Oliver Chan is a recent grad from the Hong Kong International College with a bachelor's degree in international operations management. With 2 years in the export and import industry, he gained invaluable critical thinking skills as an Operations Analyst. He highly values self-motivation and seeks to work as an Operations Manager for your firm within the next few years.

Informal professional profile

Here's a sample of an informal biography:

Andrea Li, though her fans call her Mama Hen, is the author of the best-selling young adults coming-of-age novel 'The Eggs Gotta Hatch Someday' and a former lifeguard. Her other novels include, 'Blue Monday Blues' and 'The Crystal Eye of Sally Strange'. As a lover of cats and books, Li believes that literature is the greatest gift to humankind and that it is her duty to contribute to that legacy.

Professional profile for a resume

Here's a sample of a biography for a resume:

My name is Toby Mak and my greatest passion is to provide hope and comfort to people who have been through physical trauma. With over 20 years of experience as a Physical Therapist, I help my clients of all ages learn how to walk again. There is no one size fits all approach to supporting a client's journey, so I implemented a wide range of methodologies to aid my patients with a 100% success rate. My educational background includes a Master of Physical Therapy from the University of Hong Kong.

Related: 212 Resume Action Verbs (With Tips and Examples)

Tips for writing a professional biography

Here are some tips to help you write a biography:

  • Write several versions: You can try writing multiple iterations of your biography to find one that suits you best. Consult with friends or colleagues to give you an honest review of what you've written. Use their advice to improve your writing.

  • Consider the length: It's important to determine how long your biography should be. If you're writing a quick profile, then it probably doesn't need to be more than a few sentences. Think about the context for why you are writing it and tailor the length accordingly.

  • Follow the instructions if there are any: You may be writing a biography for a client and need to write in the style and voice that they request. Make certain that you meet all their requirements and instructions to ensure that the bio is to their satisfaction. This can increase their chances of working with you again.

  • Consider your audience: It's important to identify the primary audience that's most likely to read your biography. Consider including details and information that would keep them engaged. For example, if you're writing a biography for the author of a children's picture book, then you might include light-hearted fun details.

  • Consider the tone: Determine what tone best fits your profile. Sometimes it can be more casual or more formal. This ultimately depends on the context for why you're writing a biography. While it should always be professional, you can adjust the tone to match the expectations of your target audience.

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