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How to Build Your Personal Brand

Aha Moment: Your personal brand is what you want to be known for.

Your personal brand isn’t complicated.

Think of it as what you want to be known for or what others say about you when you are not in the room.

But if this concept is different than what you’re currently most known for, you’ve got some work to do.

Here’s how to get from what people think about you now to what you want to be known for, or in other words, how to build your personal brand.

Make a lasting impression

If you believe the statement that you never get a second chance to make a first impression, get ready to be blown away.

Maybe you’ve “blown” a few first impressions.

That’s OK.

Because personal branding is really about managing impressions – not pinning your entire future on one impression.

Isn’t that a relief?

Instead of worrying about first impressions, make a lasting one.

Here’s the difference:

A first impression is what people think about you.

But a lasting impression is what you’re known for.

So you can manage how others perceive you, and even change that over time.

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Talking behind your back

This is something you can use to your advantage.

Because people ARE talking, so it should be positive.

Think about:

  • WHERE are people talking about you? If you’re the subject of someone’s joke or office gossip, you’ve got work to do.
  • Where CAN people talk about you? What meetings, events or appointments do you have each week? You’re probably connecting with a lot of different groups, people you could be leaving a lasting impression on that will affect change in your career trajectory.
  • WHAT are people saying about you? Always think about what people are saying about you when you are not in the room.

Referrals

If you’ve asked someone to refer or recommend you for a position or job, it’s probably because you expected a positive one, right?

But have you ever asked that person to share the WHAT of the referral?

What are people saying when they are referring you to others?

If it’s good, you’re golden.

If it’s bad, you need to take action.

If it’s middle of the road, don’t settle for anything less than glowing.

Rethink how you ask for referrals.

Have a conversation with a referral that you trust about the specifics you’d like to convey, for example, about your energy, management style, productivity, etc.

And make changes to your approach to asking for referrals that will help guide lasting impressions.

Introductions

Have you ever been at a party or industry function and been uncomfortable with the way someone introduces you to a connection?

That’s a sign that your lasting impression needs work.

Here’s how to manage introductions that will speak volumes about who you are.

Build a personal brand based on:

  • Your name value, or who you are.
  • Your title value, or what you call yourself.
  • Your context value, or the scope of the territory in your immediate domain.
  • Your association value, or the highest ranking official that you associate yourself within the scope of what you do.
  • Your role and contribution value, or the general role you play in the operations of your immediate domain.
  • Your accolade value, the unique skill, talent or recognition that you’re known for.

Create a first and lasting impression that showcases your personal brand to the world.

What are you known for now? And how does that need to change?

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