In a series of four articles, I will examine the fascinating and career defining subject of Personal Branding. The way you are perceived by others is down to what you project. Essentially everything you do and say, your conduct and presentation, behaviour and interaction with others will have a bearing on your Personal Brand.
So, what is a Personal Brand? We don’t have to look far to find examples, the Queen: well mannered; educated; highly articulate; immaculately presented and of course she knows how to behave at every occasion. In contrast think about ‘The Beckham’s’ whose brand is also famous. These strong personal brands are not accidental they are the results of careful management and marketing. Think about the Queen and ‘The Beckhams’ and the lifestyle they project for their publics. From the people they associate with to the cars they drive and the clothes they wear, the places they dine in and even the charities they are associated with are all carefully planned and orchestrated to maintain and preserve their Personal Brand. The key strength of both of these brands is consistency, behaving, dressing and conducting themselves in a way that we expect.
Whether you have consciously developed your personal brand or not, you will have one, just ask your colleagues, friends and family for feedback. If you receive the same feedback from more than one person the more likely it is that this is a general impression you are giving out. Be prepared to use the feedback constructively, look for your strengths and possible areas of improvement. Think about how you will change or improve, do you need professional help to learn a new skill or do you need to simply polish an existing skill.
As you develop your personal brand, think about your individuality, authenticity and consistency.
Your Personal brand marks out your uniqueness as an individual. Ask yourself if you were a brand, what brand would you be and why; spend some time thinking about this. What are your brand values? Write down your values and see if they are congruent with the way people perceive you?
Your brand should also be authentic. Pretending to be someone you are not won’t work unless you are a professional method actor. If we say something we don’t believe then it will often show in our body language and/or facial expression. This incongruence will be noticed by others and undermine your personal brand.
You should ensure that your personal brand is consistent, without consistency you don’t have a brand. Remember the Queen, everything she does and says, the way she behaves and presents herself. How consistent are you in your behaviour, demeanour and presentation?
Look out for the next article coming soon or for help with your personal brand follow the link