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Personal Branding: Creating the Brand Called You
Personal Branding: Creating the Brand Called You
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Money Management

Personal Branding: Creating the Brand Called You

Money254
Ian Job
June 18, 2022

Nike, Apple, and Uber are all household names. What images do you conjure? Think Nike and images of hard-working athletes; think of Apple, and terms like "sleek," "sophisticated," and "state of the art" come to mind. 

Know what? The same should apply to your personal brand. What do you want them to think when they hear your name or see you at work?

Personal branding necessitates self-awareness and deliberate action. How can you build a positive, dependable, recognisable personal brand? 

Identifying your principles and how others perceive you are critical steps in your personal development. Note that you have more power over that image than you believe.

What's a Personal Brand?

How you present yourself to the world is referred to as your brand. Ideally, you desire the world to see your particular mix of abilities, knowledge, and character. Essentially, it's how you tell your story and how it portrays your actions, words, and feelings.

To stand out from the crowd, you use your brand. You can connect your personal brand to your business in a way that corporate branding can't even accomplish on its own.

Your professional personal brand is the perception that others have of you in the workplace. Real-life observations, media portrayals, and online data can influence how others perceive your personality and character.

Without your input, you can ignore or manipulate your personal brand and let it build organically, possibly chaotically.

Until recently, your personal brand was essentially just your business card. Few people might have heard of you if you weren't a household name in the media or a prominent face in advertising. 

However, you are far less anonymous in today's widely publicised world, where social media discusses every other aspect of our actions in great detail.

The Importance of Building a Personal Brand

When people search for you online or meet you in person, they will see your brand, representing who you are and the image you want to project.

It's possible to create a searchable online personal profile from all of our social media activities—whether we're aware of it or not. For example, when conducting background checks on potential new employees, today's employers are turning to the Internet for help. 

In fact, 57% of employers say they are less likely to interview an applicant they cannot find on the Internet.

By actively developing a personal brand that reflects your personality, you can control how you are perceived rather than letting it happen by chance. 

Although social networking sites are primarily about interacting with others, viewing them as platforms from which you can easily build your brand is a good idea.

Note that once you have a renowned brand, it can significantly impact your career and elevate you. 

Know Yourself

To build a successful personal brand, follow these steps. We'll begin by looking at where you are and who you are right now, and we'll go from there. If you want to understand your brand better, here are some questions to ask yourself:

What Is the Current State of My Brand?

Consider what's working and not right now for your brand as a starting point. Do not overthink this. Consider the following self-examining questions:

  1. How do others perceive me? For example, you may be known for being a cheerful volunteer or aloof and reticent. On a typical day, how would others describe your character and demeanour?
  1. Do I need to keep or improve upon any of these qualities? It would help if you focused on your strongest positive traits to make a big difference in your life. For example, you may be an excellent communicator. Keep a record of your characteristics that positively affect the people and environments around you.
  1. Should I get rid of any bad habits? First, list any habits stifling your progress or negatively impacting your daily routine. Whether you're always running late to work or have difficulty admitting compliments, it's time to change your ways. You can significantly boost your brand by making adjustments in this area. Just write down the habits that are preventing you from achieving your goals right now.

What Are My Strengths and Interests?

In the meantime, it's time to delve deeper and consider your personality and what counts most to you in life. To get you started, consider posing the following queries:

  1. How has God made me? or What most naturally comes to me? A mentor or humanitarian can bring meaning to many people's lives, but some people are made to be inventors, while others thrive in physically demanding jobs. Jot down your favourite pastimes and how they make you feel.
  1. Why should people remember me? We're all in this together, so don't be afraid to delve into this. A noble and impossible goal isn't the point of this question; it's meant to expose the core of your personality. For example, if you're a people person who loves business, you might aspire to be recognized as a great leader. On the other hand, you may want to be recognised for highlighting a client's individuality as a hairdresser. Describe your ideal legacy in one sentence or fewer.
  1. What do I want people to think of me if ______ is all that matters? What specific steps should I take to achieve this goal? Being seen as an all-around team player could be beneficial if leadership is your primary concern. Be a team player by doing what you can to help and support your coworkers. Consistent, long-term actions support your brand, even if initially appearing simple.
  1. What other means of expression are there for me? How you walk, dress and talk are ways to communicate your beliefs. Do you have a grin on your face? Is your attire appropriate for the job you're in? Even though you don't need to spend a fortune on looking at the part, it can make a big difference in your brand if you pay attention to your appearance. Likewise, it is essential to be confident and kind when you speak. All of these factors influence your brand.

Receive Feedback on Your Existing Personal Brand

Invite your boss, trusted colleagues, and anyone who knows you well to discuss your present personal brand. (At this point, brace yourself because this could become an unpleasant process.) You'll have blind spots highlighted, which is a good thing. You'll also discover what people admire about you that you never knew.

The goal is to get a sense of how people perceive you, not for them to pass judgment on your character. Send a short email that reads something like this:

"I'd like to know where my brand stands so I can make adjustments." I value your feedback and would like to hear about my strengths and weaknesses. I want to know how you perceive me so that I can discover where and how to improve."

Here are some great questions to ask others to begin comprehending your current personal brand at work. 

  • Is it your opinion that I am well-liked at work?
  • Do I get good coaching in the areas where I need to improve?
  • Can you rely on me to complete the work I am responsible for?
  • Do I handle sudden changes at work well?
  • Do you believe in my ability to make sound decisions when nobody's looking?

When you receive feedback, simply say, "Thank you so much," and move on. Don't try to defend yourself or justify your actions. It's up to you to discover how others perceive you, not shield your actions. (It is your responsibility to create a safe environment where people can answer honestly.) Because, let's face it, inquiring what someone truly thinks can be uncomfortable for everyone.)

How to Create a Personal Brand

It would be best if you built your brand in a way that makes it easy to talk about online and easy to say out loud and show through actions and behaviours.

Since you will "live and breathe" your brand, it's essential that it's true to who you are and shows that.

Follow these steps to create your brand:

1. Figure Out Your Passion

With your brand, it must be consistent with your interests and hobbies. Are you pursuing a career or a hobby that you are passionate about? Professional speakers sell themselves as people who can talk in front of large groups and have the desire to succeed in their field of expertise.

2. Extend Your Network Using Social Media

Create social networking profiles that suit your interests. Making the most of your LinkedIn profile is critical to achieving your professional goals. Keep your Facebook and Twitter profiles in sync with your brand's overall tone and message if you use these social media sites.

3. Organize Your Thoughts and Make a Personal Strategy

Describe how you plan to take advantage of your own unique personal brand. In the same way that any commercial or corporate brand has a strategy for growth, you should map out a roadmap for your personal brand's development. Then, begin creating contacts, actions, and plans for the future that are consistent with your brand.

4. Narrate a Story

Storytelling is a highly successful strategy for developing a strong personal brand. But, even if it's simple to express who you are and what you do professionally, a bland description of who you are won't help you stand out from the crowd.

Sharing your Brand with Others

If you don't share your brand with the rest of the world, all your hard work will be in vain. Instead, you can share with others what you've learned about yourself, your values, beliefs, skills, and character.

1. Be Truthful

Be who you are, no matter what anyone else thinks of you. Imitating someone else deprives the world (and yourself) of your unique skills, mission, and meaning.

2. Take Steps

Practice what you preach. Begin to act consistently with the person you aspire to become. Don't grumble about arriving a few minutes early to work. When Jenny in accounting remarks on your new haircut, say thanks. When the barista serves you a cup of tea, give her a wide grin. These seemingly insignificant exchanges accumulate over time.

3. Display (And Promote) Your Brand

You want people to know what you're all about, so don't be obnoxious about it. Instead, you can gradually introduce this information into the dialogue naturally. Let them play out. Walk the talk. Do this, and your brand will benefit from it.

4. Continue Maintaining and Expanding Your Brand

Do your best to live and work to the fullest extent possible. Continue your education by reading books, attending classes, and listening to podcasts. Invest in your friendships and mentorships with others. Your health and well-being are essential for pursuing new endeavours, so take care of yourself. It is the beginning of a lifelong character and personal brand development process.

WRAPPING UP

Creating a personal brand that others can trust is the key to increasing your income and having a more meaningful work experience. Want to know how people see you professionally and personally? 

The questions on self-knowledge can help you identify what you're doing well and how you might strengthen your brand. As a reminder, openness to honest and sincere feedback could help you advance in your profession!

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