Personal Branding: A Complete Manual Part 3
Part 2 of ‘Personal Branding: A complete Manual’, emphasized the significance of outlining and identifying your strengths and limitations. Your strengths are what gives you an edge and it is crucial that you use them to your advantage. They are there for a good reason. We also established that focusing weaknesses that do not serve or add any value to your purpose should simply be pushed aside. However, if you require certain skills that would benefit your goals, then by all means strengthen that limitation.
In part 3 of this manual will further look at other elements that paints the bigger picture in personal branding. First:
Knowing what your values are, is knowing who you are and what you stand for. Having strong values, help you establish and navigate your thoughts so that they are in synergy with your passion and essence. In other words, before you involve yourself in anything at all, ask yourself, “is this in sync with my values and what I stand for?”
Values are essentially a set of principles that you live by. They define the codes that determine your personality, attitude, actions, reactions and so on. Look at it this way; perhaps the reason you are unhappy at work is because your values are not allied with what you do. Having values, therefore, is standing-up for what you believe in. It is crucial to align who you are with what you engage yourself in.
“Love is the expression of one’s values, the greatest reward you can earn for the moral qualities you have achieved in your character and person, the emotional price paid by one person for the joy he or she receives from the virtues of another.” – Ayn Rand
Define your values
Here is a link that will help you establish your values for your personal brand. Study the list in the link and by a process of elimination, choose the top 5 words that rings true to you and who you are. Establish why you chose these particular words and define what they mean to you. Use them to build your personal mission statement and hold yourself accountable if you are not respecting your values. These values should be communicated in your CV, website, social media platforms and blog posts.
Have passion for what you do! That is the number one rule. It might seem difficult to reconcile the idea of passion and work. However, do establish that which you enjoy doing. That which gives you joy. Furthermore, consider topics that fascinate you, that keep you inspired and wanting more.
If you are still confused about what your passion might be, think about a time when you could not wait to do something or read about something. Think about the time you could not wait to get out of bed, and about the things that moved you to tears. Don’t forget the projects that made feel creative and filled with ideas.
When you feel stimulated and motivated to do something, then you are passionate about it. Ask yourself:
- What do I really like about my current job?
- If I were to volunteer, which charity would you choose? Why?
- What do you spend most of your time doing?
“There is no passion to be found playing small–in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” – Nelson Mandela
Your job related interests should be in more or less of the following areas:
- Problem solving
- Other ways of communication
- Negotiating and many more
What words would you use to describe yourself? Also consider the words that others might use to describe you. Deliberate on the following words without limiting yourself; creative, thoughtful, visionary, ambitious, resourceful, risk-taker, negotiator, ethical, connected, compassionate, animated, worldly, diplomatic and so on. Find attributes that best describes your personality and use them to communicate your brand essence.
Once you are clear about your values, attributes and passion, it’s time to now position yourself. What does that mean exactly? It is simply means that you should consider how others perceive you based on your strengths, values, mission, attributes and passion. Remember, this is about authenticity. In the place of work, you have to be consistent about who you say you are.
Create a positioning statement. This statement you can use during interviews as it is more powerful and fresh than going on about your monotonous career past. It captures your essence and uniqueness.
At this point you should have everything you need in order to attract the right audience. You must first determine the industry in which you wish to work, then search for ideal organisations you wish to work for. Conduct an extensive research on these organisations and establish what problems they are faced with; you might be a match for them based on your unique strengths, values, passions and attributes.
With your homework done, create a personal brand strategy using the keywords in job descriptions to attract their attention. After all, they want to hire good talent and someone that matches their standards. However, remember to never give everything you have, reserve some of your good selling points for the interview.
“In Social Media the “squeaky wheel” gets the oil. You have to put yourself out there, to find people who will relate or even debate with you, depending on what you are looking for.” – Jessica Northey
Remember to stay true and be consistent with your personal brand. All the elements discussed in this trilogy should be communicated effectively over the digital media. You should remember that in this age of information and technology, you have the power to make or break yourself. Utilise the platforms that are now available to communicate your personal brand effectively.
Thanks for reading!
I see you.