When it comes to someone’s work ethic, most of us are familiar with the phrase “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” but this can also be applied to personal branding. Personal branding needs to be just that; personal. If all we ever do when we network, meet people or share status updates, is speak about business, we render ourselves flat. It could be said that “all work and no play makes Jack a dull brand” too.
Part of personal branding, whether you are the CEO, business owner, senior executive, middle manager or coach, is personality congruence; we have to be congruent and confident enough to let our personality shine from within the brand. The brand should resemble who we are and what we stand for; we need to incorporate what gives us depth, outside of our business, with our personal brand. Do we run, do we read philosophy, do we take photographs, or maybe help out at SPCA’s? Some of us may have kids and domestic chores and challenges. Sharing this side of us allows us to build familiarity and have rapport with potential prospects.
There is, however, a fine line between sharing and over-sharing. People may not care what diet we’re on or where we find the best clothing bargains; discretion is important. You want to show people the side of you that will only enhance how your personal brand is being perceived.
If we think ‘I have nothing else to share’, it’s time to take a look at how we’re spending our time and how outside activities can develop us as people, which in turn translates into a deeper, more rounded brand. The “wheel of life” is a tool, which you use to capture what is important to you in your life and, ultimately, it is used to create balance in our lives. Consider life as a whole divided into segments. Each segment represents an area of your life – for example, business, money, spiritual growth, hobbies, and community contributions.
After creating your “wheel of life” you can ask yourself:
- Are you giving attention to all the aspects of your life?
- And are you aligning them to create a holistic personal brand?
Just as a person becomes dull without a personality, so too can a personal brand become invisible without any personal and individual characteristics – your personal brand should aim to inspire people not only because of what it is but because of what it stands for.
This article is further published at www.entrepreneurmag.co.za in my monthly personal branding column : http://www.entrepreneurmag.co.za/advice/marketing/branding/give-your-brand-personality/
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