At my work, there is an initiative where it is suggested, nay, recommended that I build my own personal “Brand”.
Effectively it is a “What sets me apart from that of others”. I find it interesting that this is a direction that is taken in a professional world.
Why you ask ?
In so much of what I do, I work with, and in, teams. I am usually one member of a team, a team of 4 or 40 (or sometimes 400). The goal of a team is not to identify as an individual brand, but that of success (or success for the team). Success in achieving a common goal. I choose to use the word success instead of winning. Understanding that success means successful attainment of a common/shared goal. Winning is what I usually associate to an individual objective. Winning to me implies that if you win, then someone else loses.
I’m going to make the distinction right now. I think that branding for personal and professional are very different, and the underlying objectives in each. I know you may not necessarily agree with me on this point, but that is your prerogative.
I’m going to do a level-set right now… This blog is about my random thoughts and ideas, so I am going to move away from the professional side of the conversation and focus more on the personal side.
When we think personal branding. Believe it or not, everything that you do online has “Digital footprint”. You post something on social media, a mark is made. You like something, you make a comment, all of this leaves a digital footprint. A mark of you. Ultimately someone can take a look at this activity and analyze it. Yes, painting a picture of your likes, attitudes and even understand how you think. Your very online presence is the start of a Personal Brand. I’m not trying to scare you with this, but more make you aware of it. What you do and what you say can speak volumes about you. Your online digital footprint is not the only way of making your personal brand. There are more traditional methods for doing this. And I definitely have friends that have a very scarce online presence.
So what gives those friends a personal brand ?
It’s something similar and yet oh so simple… it is all the things the say and do, in person. And more of what they do.
When I was first hearing of the Personal Brand moniker at work. I was initially very resistant to the idea. However, I think that a brand will be made for you whether or not you put effort into crafting it, or you just “let it happen organically”. I would rather have control over my brand. So…
What is your brand ?
What do others see and how does that brand influence others ?
All I ask is this.. Make sure it’s the message you want it to be.