I am a huge fan of the idea that you are your brand. And that it is essential for anyone who wants to progress well in their career to become very clear on their message and the ‘brand’ they present; whether for they run their own business, are employed or looking for new employment
This notion was first coined most convincingly by Tom Peters; business guru and all round voice of business growth. It leads us all to consider whether we are being clear on getting our message across and why that is so important.
Think of the person looking to secure a new job. Rather than just pursuing the first opportunity they see they should first consider what sort of company might fit well with their ethos and belief system and then they start to track down leads into those companies thus ensuring more chance of finding the perfect fit.
Although this may need to happen with a few different organisations to get that right fit, it will be based on a strong reflection of you (Brand You) and will invariably offer a much more successful outcome on all levels. When you make your application you will have already been very clear that this is a company that suits you and that will be clear to the potential employer that you have the potential to be ‘one of us’.
Already you are ahead of the competition.
Equally when running your own business you need to clearly reflect what your core beliefs and intentions are – so in my case the things that are important to me are that – I believe in affording dignity to all, compassion and a non-judgemental attitude coupled with a real interest in seeing others succeed and flourish. I would hope that this message comes through loud and clear in every interaction I have around my business. My intention is to be very
I believe this so passionately that I rarely have to say that is my ‘brand’ message because I would hope that this comes through loud and clear in every interaction I have in every aspect of my life, business or personal. My intention is to be clear and consistent so that people can really feel I am to be trusted but equally having no issue at all in saying no to people I feel I cannot help or offer my best service to.
So perhaps you set up a security company, what message do you want to send? Perhaps it would be – I am clear that when people come to me they are considering a fairly scary outcome that they really want to avoid at all costs, they are already feeling vulnerable so I want people to know I take their worries about security seriously, I understand that not everyone is in a position to afford the extensive range I could offer them but whether they buy a new lock or a whole security system from me they will receive courtesy, conversation and clarity at all times.
Perhaps it would be – I am clear that when people come to me they are considering a fairly scary outcome that they really want to avoid at all costs, they are already feeling vulnerable so I want people to know I take their worries about security seriously, I understand that not everyone is in a position to afford the extensive range I could offer them but whether they buy a new lock or a whole security system from me they will receive courtesy, conversation and clarity at all times.
So you can see that whatever you do has to have the stamp of ‘you’ on it.
As an employee we still bring our own brand – perhaps one might move job to job but always by being consistent in delivery of the added value you bring as a person – so not just doing the job but offering your own style and ethos to that delivery. The very greatest success comes from that clear vision of yourself within the companies you work for.
Why is it important?
People buy people, straight and simple. We are all pretty good at judging (even if it is unconsciously) whether someone is being genuine or just saying what they think you want to hear (think back to interviews when that has happened with you on the receiving end and I think you will agree).
So it is essential that, if you are to offer and receive the benefits of win win exchanges, you need to be very clear about your priorities and equally demand clarity from those you deal with. Be that future employer, service provider or customer.
People like boundaries and so we all respond well to knowing where we are with someone. Those people in our lives that run hot and cold are the most exhausting to be around aren’t they? We never quite know whether to believe what they say. However, gain consistency, even if the person is a bit of a tyrant, we at least know where we are and can react accordingly. Much less exhausting.
Before all else, start to work out who ‘brand you’ is. Things will be so much easier for you once you do.
And as ever, if you want any more, you know where I am.