When reading the word “brand”, what comes to mind? Is it your favorite company to shop from? The logo for a fast food restaurant? Have you ever considered that you too have your own brand? That’s right, your personal brand.
The definition of a brand is “a public image, reputation, or identity conceived of as something to be marketed or promoted” (Merriam-Webster). In short, a brand is what others see and perceive about something. Your personal brand consists of what others see and perceive about you. Your reputation, social media portrayal, appearance, and behavior. And guess what? Like any good marketing department, you are in control of creating, maintaining, and advancing your brand.
How Do I Discover My Personal Brand?
Let’s approach this question with the end goal in mind. Make a list of how you want to be perceived. How do you want others to talk about you when you aren’t there? What do you want viewers to take away from your social media posts? How do you want others to feel when you engage with them? For example:
- I want others to perceive me as approachable, kind, and intelligent.
- I want others to see my social media as fun, honest, and appropriate.
- I want others to talk about how I am dedicated and always ready to lend a helping hand.
Once you have a working understanding of what you want your personal brand to entail, begin to identify the areas of your life that you can advance your branding in. Do you want to be seen as a go-getter? Start asking for how you can hop on-board for projects or sit in on an upcoming meeting. Want to be seen as approachable? Begin striking up conversations with those around you to build friendships. Every step you take can you just a little bit closer to where you want to be.
What If I Discover I Have a Negative Personal Brand?
If you are reading through this post knowing that your personal brand is subpar, fear not. It is possible to bounce back from a negative past and propel towards a positive future.
First, follow the previous steps and perform a self-audit of your personal brand. The only way to know where you want to go is first knowing where you have been. Then, begin taking actionable steps towards change. You don’t just need remove the negativity; you must add positivity in its place. If you have a negative or hateful social media portrayal, don’t simply scrub your profiles clean, but begin positively engaging. If you have a history of fussy behavior with co-workers, make a mental note of kind topics for upcoming conversations. It may be uncomfortable, but embrace the change. Edit your life to work towards where you want to be.
Before closing, I do want to make an important note: while personal branding is something we should all consider, you are not only what others see. You are more than how others perceive you, and the opinions of others are not everything. Your personal brand should be created for you and to get you where you want to be, not just to please others.
Debi is a coach to high performers, leaders and business owners wanting to achieve more and grow beyond what they believe is possible. Known for her clarifying insight and a pragmatic approach, Debi brings her clients to the next step by asking the right questions during strategy development and supporting them during implementation. With experience in management, recruitment and employee development for various industries, she has a wide scope of expertise and will confidently guide you towards a successful future in your career.
Ready to take your career to the next level?
Let’s chat. Schedule a call to discuss innovative solutions to your specific needs.