THE TRUTH ABOUT YOUR PERSONAL BRAND

 

A lot of people hear the phrase “personal brand” or “personal branding” and dismiss it as some sort of entrepreneurial buzzword or corporate blah speak.

Or perhaps you think you’re not supposed to have a personal brand because you’re working full-time with an employer plus you have a side hustle and side hustlers need to keep a low profile. Sure, full blown entrepreneurs should have a brand but not the humble side hustler.

I’m here to share some home truths about your Personal Brand…

 
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YOU HAVE A PERSONAL BRAND WHETHER YOU LIKE IT OR NOT

That’s right, whether you actively work to shape and mould your personal brand to represent your true self or decide to do absolutely nothing with it, you still have a personal brand.

Why?

Because your personal brand is determined by the perceptions of other people - not your own.

So if this is the case, wouldn’t you prefer to have a say on how people perceive you? And not just other people, the right people?

If you’re answering yes then you and I are on the same page.

“YOUR PERSONAL BRAND ISN’T CLEAR”

This is feedback I got that had a major impact on me.

It’s funny the comments you receive during your life that hit home. The deliverer probably hasn’t given it a second thought but to me, it literally changed my life.

When I began my first office job, personal branding seemed to be an elusive concept. In fact, it wasn’t even something that was taught at University.

So what happened?

Well, it was many years ago when I was going for an internal promotion at a big financial institution I was employed at. Alas, I didn’t get it.

The feedback was my “personal brand wasn’t clear”. He elaborated and told me that “other candidates were way more passionate about the role than you”. Ouch!

Although the manager said I had the ability to do the role, to him I didn’t really seem interested enough.

And he was right.

I thought I would simply get the promotion because of my past results and my ability. I didn’t take into account that my personal brand had positioned me as slightly entitled and not passionate enough.

Deep down I knew that wasn’t me. It wasn’t emulating my truth.

Sure, the feedback stung for a while but then I decided to do something about it.

I no longer wanted to be seen as “entitled” but my true self - the happy and positive team member who had so much to offer, ready to give 100% and make the most of every opportunity.

I worked on shaping my personal brand, to market myself in a way that showed everyone the real me and what I was really about. Doing this put me in the best position to have the career I wanted and the opportunities started to flow my way.

Through this self-discovery process, I realised I had a real passion for helping people (rather than helping the numbers) and I was offered a role in Human Resources. This led me to become a recruiter turned career coach turned side hustle coach.

In releasing the person I thought I had to be, I was able to embrace the person I always wanted to be.

3 EASY STEPS TO FIND YOUR PERSONAL BRAND

But how do you define and enhance your personal brand?

  • Do you hire a brand stylist?

  • Do you enlist the services of a PR pro?

  • Do you copy everything your mentor does?

  • Do you sit in a cave for a moment in complete solitude and ask the universe to reveal your true self?

Well maybe, but I have a far easier way.

  1. First, identify what your personal brand currently is. Write down everything you believe your personal brand to be.

  2. Next, ask close friends and colleagues what your personal brand is to them. What do they see as your strengths and weaknesses, qualities and traits?

  3. Now compare your self-assessment with their assessment. What are the gaps? What parts of your brand do you want to enhance and show off a bit more?

You now have a way to see through your own facade and you’re able to create a personal brand plan. Awareness is power.

This is often the pre-work I drop for my private clients. This, coupled with some other techniques I’ve learnt along the way, they are well on the way to carving out the personal brand they want.

(I have a free workbook at the bottom of this article if you’re interested.)

WORK ON YOUR PERSONAL BRAND EVERYDAY

I work on my brand every day.

I regularly apply the 3 steps above. Through this process, I discovered I enjoyed working out what made people tick and how my responses would influence them.

I studied my own reaction to situations - the good, the bad and the ugly.

 Once I embraced my personal brand and confidently spoke about opportunities found me such as the Daily Mail doing an article on me.

Once I embraced my personal brand and confidently spoke about opportunities found me such as the Daily Mail doing an article on me.

I took note of feedback and how my managers, peers, friends and family viewed me. All the fights I had with my boyfriends and all the disagreements I had with my besties were actually years of research in understanding my personal brand.

Cast your mind back to similar situations and try putting yourself in the other person’s shoes. How did you come across from their perspective? This is hard to do and that’s why I encourage you to ask them directly.

YOUR PERSONAL BRAND IS AN EVOLUTION

My personal brand is constantly changing.

I like to think it is constantly doing upgrades like the operating system on your Mac.

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Now I confidently show up every day on social media and promote my personal brand and business.

I have been featured in the media and am invited to run workshops to businesses on personal branding and employer branding. All because they have seen my personal brand in action.

Big things can happen with a little effort!

Understanding your personal brand is not just a hot buzzword right now, it’s a necessity. It’s a compass for everything we do.

Our careers, our businesses and even our inner circle are highly influenced by who we choose to be and how we let others see our light.

Personal brand is a choice.

You can absolutely choose to take control of it or you can let others make up their minds for you.

After losing out on promotions, missing out on dream jobs, burning bridges, shying away from hard to hear feedback I realised it was all down to me.

I had the control to change it all. I had every power within me to create a brand for myself that would always get everything I wanted and desired in this life.

So this is it.

I want to show you how to own your personal brand like I have. I want you to have everything you wish for. I would love for you to feel the confidence that I do when I go for opportunities.

I can’t wait for you to feel the freedom, energy and choice you’ll get when you take the reins of your brand.

WANT TO DISCOVER YOUR PERSONAL BRAND RIGHT NOW?

 

I have created a workbook for you to implement the 3 easy steps to find your personal brand.

It will walk you through a self-awareness exercise as well as an exercise to find out how others perceive your brand.

It’s a lot of fun so why not give it go!

(Direct download - no email address required.)

 
 
Ruby Lee