In a world where billions of people are able to join the global talent pool, you need to stand out from the crowd. Having a clear vision of who you are and what value you bring to others is vital in such a joined up and technologically-enabled world. This requires putting in the time and resources to creating mastery of who you are and being able to identify and develop your own ‘signature’ of the value you bring to others.
Everybody has a personal brand. The question is are you in the driving seat of cultivating and growing it or is it being driven for you?
Think about these five ways to building your personal brand.
1. Start thinking of yourself as a brand
All successful businesses have a clear and compelling vision about why they do what they do. Creating an authentic personal brand starts in much the same way. Building a brand is not about shouting the loudest. There are many other ‘brand builders’ out there who are doing that. What is crucial is to craft a trusted personal brand – that is authentic and connects powerfully with others. A strong personal brand is dependent on a strong narrative. So what’s you story?
2. Define your personal values
Aligning and prioritising what you do to your values is when you will likely be at your best and feel your most fulfilled. Defining your core personal values enables you to identify what has most meaning for you. Values are also there to guide the choices you make that are part of building your personal brand. Take time out to reflect on what your personal values are and whether you need to make any changes to living a life that is more in line with your values.
3. Commit to lifelong learning
Gone are the days of the generalist. As our world becomes increasingly blended with technology and organisational structures are reinvented, the opportunity to develop mastery of your chosen area of expertise becomes increasingly important. Be prepared to learn, unlearn and relearn to remain relevant. Put in the time and effort to create true depth of expertise. Which of your skills and knowledge are likely to be valuable now and in the future? What else do you need to learn?
4. Build your social capital
Building your social capital – being part of a collective, a community of people both offline and online will enable you to cooperate, connect and innovate, three critical competencies for the 21st century. Be purposeful at the same time about which groups you become part of. Whilst you want a wide reach, do not try to do and be everything to everyone. Ensure that you can add value actively and consistently to your community and in ways that enhance your brand’s expertise.
5. Be an innovative connector
Create a rich network of interesting and diverse people that you can connect with and learn from as much as they can learn from you. In such a joined-up, global world, it’s clear that innovation and creativity are critical competencies to be developed. These are not competencies that are easily developed alone. Connect to the know-how competencies and networks of others. With 5 billion connected to each other in an increasingly collaborative way, the opportunities are endless.