What is a personal brand?
Jeff Bezos defined it aptly by stating that ‘Your personal brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room’. So you want to have a positive connotation when your name comes up in the room when you are not present, it’s as simple as that.
A well-crafted & strong personal brand allows you to clearly show and tell people who you are and what you stand for. Many people do the mistake of thinking that developing a personal brand from scratch is not needed or that it is only for the rich and famous. Unfortunately, that couldn’t be further from the truth. We all need to work on our personal brand at workplace. Michelle Obama highlights that need succinctly in her book ‘Becoming’ – “If you don’t get out there and define yourself, you will be quickly and inaccurately defined by others”. Therefore, it is in our better interest to manage our personal brand at workplace by design rather than by other’s opinions.
So, what are the 7 steps to build a strong personal brand at workplace or even re-branding ourselves?
- Start with defining your values : To build a personal brand from scratch or re-brand, you have to start with defining your values. What is it that you want to be associated with or known for? It should be something people identify you with and be a differentiator for you. Look for opportunities to create an impact in the workplace. If there is a project that is coming up that is key to the organization, volunteer to work on it even if it takes up more time because it will enable you to learn and grow beyond your current role. Hence, building your personal brand at work first starts with defining you values i.e. who you really are!
- Ask family and friends to define you in 3 words – compare these words with what you have put for yourself. You will know what others think of you and where you want to take your brand to.
- Define your target audience. To Work on your personal brand pull on this audience and have a strategy for the same. Embrace networking to connect to people and especially those that you aspire to have as your prospects. This is indeed crucial for your personal brand at workplace.
- Seek a mentor who is in a role that you admire and who is someone you look up to and seek our mentorship relationship from them. They need not be your boss necessarily. And, invest in this relationship by seeking conversations and insights regularly. You will be surprised with perspectives you gain which would not be covered in any book or video tutorial. If you want a strong personal brand , try and have different mentors for different areas of your life.
- Look for building a network and cordial relationships beyond your own department. Be seen as a connector and enabler. Go prepared for meetings with the intent of contributing value towards the objectives and the agenda.
- Make your brand visible through the digital footprint : You also need to work on making your brand visible through the digital footprint. Whether you like it or not, people invariably check people out on social media. You need to ensure that your social profiles are consistent and reinforce your brand values.
- Provide value for your stake-holders : Last but not the least, provide value for your stake-holders – the people who interact and work with you.
Your brand should do three things: show people exactly who you are and what you can do for them; showcase your talents, skills, and accomplishments; and outline proof of your reliability and trustworthiness.
Looking for insights into your own personal branding journey?
Hi ! I’m Sonnia & I have helped 1000+ professionals achieve their career goals by building an effective personal brand through :
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