Companies spend a lot of time and money on developing their brands. Essentially, a brand is built on a combination of feelings and thoughts about the company that resonates in the hearts and minds of their customers.
Why shouldn’t that be true about people? That each one of us has a brand—which is to say, what each of us at our core is really about—and stands for something.
Personal branding is NOT about being famous, nor is it about setting up a Facebook page and having thousands of followers on Twitter.
Certainly, these can be effective tools to promote yourself, but they are not your personal brand. In fact, social media has confused the issue by making some people think that promoting themselves as a brand is self-centered, self-indulgent, and frivolous.
In fact, nothing could be further from the truth.
Personal branding is about identifying that essence that describes who you are and how you are unique. It is the value that you provide—like a secret sauce, it is that one essential ingredient that sums up your ultimate contribution to the world.
Don’t mistake this for what you do. So many of us define ourselves by our role, job or profession. “I am a father.”
“I sell real estate.” “I am lawyer.”
Imagine instead if we described each other by who we are, that is, by that one thing that really makes us special—
Imagine if you were “The Truth Whisperer.” Or “The Enhanced Listener.” Or “The Big Idea Optimizer.”
Don’t these descriptions intrigue you to know more about these people? And they are all real people I have worked with. Do they also make you wonder about what your “secret sauce” might be?