I had a long chat with an old friend last night, on the subject of personal branding. He is someone who is commendably reflective in considering how he adds value in his professional life. Already, this puts him ahead of most others.
He wanted some practical advice on how to develop his brand. He started out young and dumb, worked hard, became pretty successful, but perhaps wants to get better at reading a room and making his presence felt, making his experience and ideas count.
So, I suggested, keep on reflecting:
Every day, consider how you were successful at doing something, anything. What helped you stand out, approach it differently (and more successfully) than you / anyone else has done before?
Upon reflection, make a stand:
Tell someone, in context of course, how you operate(d) to get the best outcomes. Don’t be dogmatic, no shouting from the rooftops. Just matter of factly, “This is what I did / how I operate…”
Hold that space, in your own truth. Repeat it regularly, and let others start to (re)orient around that idea of you. Soon enough, if it is a) true, and b) heartfelt, then others will begin to sponsor that idea of you on your behalf. They will represent that viewpoint to others.
“Hey, where’s Dave? He should be here if you want to do X. He is the best at that, for sure!”
As (these ideas) your brand promise evolves, you can push on to a new accountability, a new promise. You can move up the value chain, you can unlock more of your true value.
Tomorrow, We will consider the next stage: externalizing through stories.
←This Much We Know.→