What is a Personal Brand?
A personal brand is what you are known for and how other people experience you. It involves bringing who you are to what you do and how you do it. For example, it includes:
– showcasing a strength or skill
– developing a skill
– staying true to your own values
– employing your passions
– fulfilling your key purpose.
Why do I need a Personal Brand?
We are all now more responsible for our own career management; we cannot wait for someone else to develop our career (although it might happen). We need to take control of and manage what we convey to others.
Increasingly, employers want staff who are adaptable, resilient and able to apply their skills across a variety of businesses and functions. Creating a strong ‘personal’ brand guards you against becoming siloed and potentially frees you to move roles more fluidly. It can also help you to communicate your ‘story’ and capabilities in a convincing way.
In our work as Career Coaches at CCS, we frequently see clients who find it hard to recognise the value that they have to offer to organisations and to recognise the common themes in their story to date. Instead they may fixate on the fact that they have done roles that may appear unrelated or worry that they have taken breaks. Alternatively we see others who have stayed too long in a role or organisation, and are unsure how others perceive them and what they have to offer.
It is our job to help them see that there is a pattern or ‘red thread’ running through their working (and non-working) lives. By enabling them to be more clear about their values and sense of purpose, they can begin to define the feature of the ‘Brand’ they want to tell others about.
Benefits of a Personal Brand
If you take time to clarify the ingredients of your brand, you are more likely to be seen as someone who is credible and can deliver. You will be able to raise your profile and people may begin to approach you with work opportunities.
How do I create a Personal Brand?
You need to start by identify your natural strengths – those authentic qualities which come easily to you. When you are clear about your strengths, it is time to clarify your most important values – those things which matter to you. They might include:
– making a difference
– developing others
– using expertise
Then it is time to think about the descriptive words you would like be known for. These could include:
Underline or mark those words you would like to be known for and those which you already demonstrate. Then mark those words which you believe it will be important for you to show in the future. You need to link your brand to your goals, vision or mission.
Now – how do I communicate my Personal Brand?
There are many outlets for you to showcase your qualities. Here are a few:
- Using Social Media
- Write a Blog
- Join groups in or our of work
- Shadow someone in a new area
- Attend event or a course
- Participate actively on Linkedin (many people create a Linkedin Profile and do nothing else)
- Discuss ways to showcase your Personal Brand with colleagues/your manager
- Get testimonials and recommendations on Social Media that reflect your brand qualities
The CCS Personal Brand Programme helps you to be clearer about the qualities you want to convey and coaches you to project those qualities in work or at interviews.
The programme may be for you if you:
- feel like your career development has stalled
- want to be better at communicating your brand to others
- are preparing for a job search
- are returning to work after a break
- want to be better at projecting your reputation within your employer, industry or profession
- are considering a change of career.