- On July 11, 2014
I run across many articles on the importance of understanding our personal “Brand.” There’s a whole field of ‘Personal Brand Consultants’ who can help us craft the image we want to portray. Many elements contribute to our “brand” –clothing, grooming, groups we join, actions we take, choices we make.
For all that, our brand is in the eye of the beholder–other people determine our brand.
This truth hit me in the face when a friend shared this story about a new job he started this week.
During the multi-step interview process, a woman came up to him and said,
“I’m not on your project, but I was the one who called your references. I just had to come over and meet you. I’ve been doing this for a long time and I have never heard such glowing recommendations on any candidate before. Not to put too much pressure on you, but your former colleagues think you walk on water!”
My friend is one of the most humble people I know, definitely not comfortable tooting his own horn. And if I had said, “You have a really strong brand,” he would roll his eyes. Yet his values and ethics, how he treats people, and the consistency of effort he puts into his work, reinforced a “brand” that secured him a position that is ideally suited to his strengths.
Whether you want to deal with it or not, we all have a brand. And it is way more complex that just our outside image. It gets to what’s inside and how we share that with others.
What do you want your brand to say about you? What do others think is your brand? Is there a gap between how you want to be seen and how others really see you?