Have you ever actively thought about your personal brand? I suspect most professionals haven’t… after all, personal branding is a pink and fluffy thing dreamt up by marketing specialists… Or is it?
Have you ever wondered why you are (or are not) the person chosen for a juicy assignment? Or why you are (or are not) generating the level of recommendations and referrals you need?
When someone decides to recommend you for a piece of new business, they are not buying into your company or departmental brand, they are choosing you. Yes, you. 80% of our work as professionals comes to us via the referral route. The decision to choose you, is based on the strength and marketability of your personal brand.
Personal branding is a relatively new concept, but heavily linked to ‘reputation management’. The internet has enabled open up a global marketplace, and anyone can quickly build up a strong online personal brand. But it doesn’t matter whether we are talking about an online or offline personal brand, if you are not actively managing and building up a strong and marketable personal brand, then you are missing an opportunity to increase the number of referrals and recommendations coming your way.
Are you expected to regularly go out networking on behave of your firm? Have you ever thought that any work which comes your way via networking is due to your personal brand? Yes, credibility, social capital and visibility have a lot of do with referral generation – but ultimately it is your personal brand which will be the differentiating factor in whether you have a further conversation or not.
Look at any of the rain makers, potential partners or stars in your firm. I’m guessing that you would say they that they have cultivated an aura about themselves. Have you ever though about how they cultivate that aura? That aura is a direct result of the personal brand that they have built up for themselves.
Have you thought about your personal brand? Is your brand taking you to where you need to get to?