Today it’s important to build a personal brand, especially for those of us working for someone else. The best companies are no longer searching for the average Joe. Even for roles that once seemed mundane, companies are looking for the best.
Having a personal brand will set you apart from the crowd, make you interesting and attract others to you. When you’ve developed a brand that makes you unique, people will want to know, learn from and work alongside you. Even if you’re comfortable with your current role, chances are somewhere down the line you’re going to want to advance. Whether it’s with your current company or a new organization, a brand will help you do that.
Building your personal brand isn’t easy, especially if you’re used to doing your work without being noticed. The following tips will help you build your personal brand and advance your career.
Building your brand
Discover your passion
Your personal brand should be what you care most deeply about. Most of us don’t have any idea what our passions are because we have suppressed them for so long.To discover your passion, think about a time when you were truly at peace or experiencing genuine happiness. What were you doing? Were you traveling, playing with children, reading a book or perhaps writing a book? Or, think about what you choose to do in your free time that provides you with fulfillment.
Maybe your passion is the work that you’re currently doing. If that’s the case, count yourself lucky. However, you’ll still need to shape and mold your passion into something more valuable.
Create a platform where you can share your thoughts and experiences
Once you’ve uncovered your passion, you’ll want to share what you know with everyone you come across. Maybe you love learning about reducing your carbon footprint and teaching others how to implement techniques into their everyday lives. The more you share your knowledge and thoughts, the more people will think of you when they come across that issue in the future.The obvious way to share your knowledge would be face-to-face or through work communication tools. However, if you’re truly going to build a brand around this passion you should share this knowledge through a platform that can reach a large number of people. Platforms can include a blog, YouTube channel, podcast or social media accounts. Sharing through a platform will help you document your passion and knowledge and provide you with resources to refer back to when using your brand to advance your career.
Form or join a workplace group
Forming or joining a workplace group that is in alignment with your passion can help you fulfill your desires at work and meet others who have similar passions. If your passion differs from the work that you’re currently doing, being able to share and enjoy what you truly love at work will provide variety to your workday and help you connect with others.Once you’re part of or have formed a group dedicated to what you care about, being an active participant and leader will help grow your personal brand among your colleagues and will provide you with a strong support system for cultivating your brand.
Continue to learn and share
We’re human and our interests are constantly changing, which means that our passions and desires may also change. Your personal brand does not have to be stagnant. The most important thing to remember when developing your brand is that you should continually learn and share what you learn with others.
Using your brand to advance your career
Include aspects of your brand on your resume
When applying for a job, a resume is one of the first ways your potential employer gets to know you. Including what you’re passionate about on your resume and how you’ve used that passion to help others will set you apart from a majority of resumes that simply list work and education history.Two people with identical skills and similar work history will be hard to differentiate. However, if one of them cares deeply about helping those less fortunate, has a platform that documents all of the endeavors she has participated in, and is a champion in getting others at her current company to give back, who do you think will be more likely to receive an interview?
Discover opportunities within your company
As companies change and evolve to better serve employees and our ever-advancing world, new roles and opportunities are continuously being created. Establishing a brand will help you to be at the forefront of obtaining these new opportunities.Chade-Meng Tan never could have guessed that by sharing his passion about mindfulness and meditation at Google, he would eventually move from a career in engineering to the company’s Chief Happiness Officer.
Ten years ago no one could have predicted that knowing the ins and outs of social media could land you a job focused exclusively on these tools. Today, almost every major company has a team of social media managers.
Speaking and networking opportunities
Everyone can talk about what they do for work. What many of us can’t do is talk about what we are deeply passionate about or what we do in our personal time that makes us interesting.Being able to share your brand and your story could lead to speaking opportunities at your organization, community events, industry conferences and more. Through speaking and networking with others in relation to your brand, you build your credibility with the issues you care deeply about and begin to form a reputation as an expert. Once you’re viewed as an expert, your opportunities will likely be endless.
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