We have three major challenges in self-branding: (1) We must first understand ourselves and have personal clarity in deciding what self-brand we want to project to others. (2) There is often a gap between how we view ourselves and how others perceive us. We need to consider and act upon this. (3) Our self-brand must reflect EACH role we play; that is why we have multiple self-brands that we project to others (whether we realize it or not). Each role is usually distinctive: job professional, parent, friend, etc.
- Honest self-assessment is tough for many people. We don’t like to think about our faults and hear that others have negative things to say about us. And self-assessment is time-consuming and needs to be conducted periodically – not just once. But self-assessment is perhaps the most important ingredient in crafting our self-brand for our various roles and life stages.
- These are some factors to consider:
- You must have a clear sense of your self-brand.
- What are your short-term and long-term career and personal goals?
- How close are you to to reaching these goals?
- What specific activities must you engage in/do (in each role and life stage) to reach these goals?
- When you set your self-brand for each role & life stage, is it perceived that way by others? Can others get beyond stereotypes? Often, others do not see us as we see ourselves.
- Authenticity is imperative for your self-brand to be perceived as desired by others. Faking won’t cut it.
How to Better Write YOUR Own Unique Personal Brand Story
How can we improve our personal brand? By writing unique stories about ourselves.
“A good novel tells the story of the hero’s life. It details the trials and tribulations, the triumphs and failures, of a compelling protagonist. In many ways, your personal brand does the same thing for your career. Developing a strong brand is a lot like crafting a novel. You focus on those elements of your life that make you the hero of your personal brand story. Tell your story well enough, and recruiters, like readers, will root for you.”
Telling your personal brand story begins the same way as a novel… by developing a strong character. In literature, characters tend to fall into several recognizable archetypes. But this isn’t fiction. You can’t just make something up. First, you decide what kind of character you represent. Then, you sell that character by focusing on relevant details. This infographic from ESWStoryLab presents the 12 most common character types in literature. Your personal brand will either fall neatly into one of these categories, or blend several of them together. Once you’ve determined the kind of character that best represents you, you can use your experience to begin crafting your story.”
So, whom are you from the list below? Whom do you want to be? How can you do this?