Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Personal Branding Starts with An Inside Job

Developing a personal brand starts with an inside job. So, before you trumpet it to the world, you must get clear about who you are, what you stand for, and your values. You must then cultivate an ironclad understanding of the impact of your work. Then, and only then, can you comfortably and confidently share your brand with others. 

This course of action rings especially true if you want to be authentic and transparent. You cannot simply wish them into existence. Rather, they represent ideal states we must continue to work towards achieving over time.

As a result, one’s so-called “brand” often reflects an individual, transactional focus. It’s devoid of the perspective and insight that being out in the world can offer. In other words, you cannot lock yourself in a room to map out your “personal brand” devoid of the broader context.

I know that when my interests, values, and activities conflict, it’s uncomfortable, even painful.  Ultimately, I am less than satisfied with professional opportunities that I encounter.

More importantly, when you tout a personal brand that doesn’t match who you actually are, I believe it’s patently obvious to others. That only hurts you over time. 

Yes, we need to define ourselves lest others do so to our disadvantage. Yet action divorced from deeply held and felt beliefs and values is doomed to fail. So, look inward before you communicate outward, if you hope to build a personal brand that lasts. 

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