Be true to yourself

January 31, 2016 Uncategorized

Some things never change: Your personal brand has to come from what’s true and what’s best about you: your talents, values, and ideas.

Nothing will replace authenticity.

Nothing will replace a unique insight into a consumer’s need or a new solution to a problem. The solution can become a brand, and the brand can meet that need.

What makes an elevator speech effective?

January 23, 2016 Uncategorized

The elevator speech is a must that many people overlook. Hence they stumble through explaining who they are and why that is important when they are in the job interview, at a networking event or even meeting with the boss for your annual review.

The “elevator speech” is short. (That’s why they call it that.) It should be your thirty-second personal commercial.

It’s your introduction to yourself that is colloquial, conversational and memorable. That’s why you’ll want to use a sound bite or analogy or anecdote to set yourself apart.

In essence, an elevator speech should convey the key highlights of what you have done, how you did it, and imply, there’s more that you can do for them.


How to market yourself for a job in a bad economy

January 20, 2016 Uncategorized

Job hunting in a bad economy is not high on anyone’s to-do list. To be successful you need to use different tactics and strategies – that’s where the branding model can be helpful. Branding is all about standing out and getting traction in a competitive environment.

            Adopting the marketing mindset, begin with your “customers” (hiring managers). What are they looking for? What reaction do you want to get from them? Then work backwards.

What is the best way to appeal to them? What accomplishments and experiences should you emphasize? What should you de-emphasize or eliminate? What specific actions can you take to get the reaction you want?



Are you stuck at work?

January 19, 2016 Uncategorized

Look at “Kate,” a successful executive in a large corporation who was stuck in the mid level. Colleagues who had similar responsibilities to Kate had been promoted, but Kate had been left behind.

When Kate discussed her situation with her boss, he told her that she lacked “visibility” in the company. Kate had focused so much on her many tasks and her team that she was unknown outside of her department. Maybe her boss had even nominated her for a promotion, but other members of the team had questioned it because they didn’t know her.

To change her situation, Kate began an internal networking and visibility campaign. Kate started volunteering for cross-functional task forces so she could contribute in a broader fashion and build her internal network. Since she had a large team of direct reports, she set up a monthly lunch-and-learn, and invited senior executives she wanted to meet to present to the group.

No longer the invisible woman and with a network of supporters throughout the company, Kate eventually got her promotion. The higher you go in your job, you’ll find you need visibility and the ability to create positive perceptions about yourself.


Perception = Reality

January 16, 2016 Uncategorized

To a large extent, business success is based on perceptions – other people’s perceptions about you.

If people think you are on top of your game, you will be. If people think you’re a B player, you will be – until you change their perceptions.

Your success in business or life is based on perceptions, other people’s perceptions of who you are, how good you are, and even what you are worth. Branding strategies and tactics can help you build the right perceptions in the minds of others about you.

So how do you change perceptions so that you can rebrand yourself”

You need to build perceptual links to your new brand identity and visibility for yourself.


Start with a Personal Brand Audit

January 14, 2016 Uncategorized

Marketers do research such as small focus groups to gauge what’s special or problematic about the brand. You already have a lot of focus group information at your disposal too if you start observing.

What do people compliment you for? Criticize you for? What do you love to do? What do your clients or bosses say about you?

What are the themes in your yearly performance review? What are your strengths? What are the vulnerable areas? What new directions are your interests taking you?

Know Thyself!

January 14, 2016 Uncategorized

The phrase “Know Thyself” may have been written on the temple at Delphi thousands of years ago, but few of us have taken it to heart.

Personal branding means using the principles and strategies from the commercial world of brands and applying them to your most important asset – Brand You. After all, career success involves many things such as choosing the right projects and experiences, developing new skills and getting exposure to influential people who can help you. And the longer your record of successes is and the more people are aware of you, the more successful you will be.

Brand managers have been managing brands that way for decades. Successful people realize they must look beyond the task at hand and empower themselves to create their own career success too.

They ask, Where do I go from here.” They creatively and strategically navigate their careers.


Saying “Yes” is the Foundation of Improv

January 12, 2016 Uncategorized

Saying yes to everything is the very foundation of Improv Theater. I learned a little about Improv at a full-day corporate event I spoke at where Improv actors provided fun entertainment on the theme of personal branding after my talk. Agreeing begins the process then the actor adds something to take what is offered in a positive direction.

Saying “Yes” can be helpful in business, too, and not just in the sense of meeting people you wouldn’t have met otherwise like Susan did. Saying yes prevents you from blocking – the critic in side of us who cuts off possibilities.

Saying yes can be a useful exercise when you are trying to brainstorm new ideas, innovate new products or processes, come up with a new solution, or do something that you didn’t think you could do.

To get started, check out this website on Improv Wisdom Or, try saying yes to everything for just one day. Let me know how it goes.


“Just Say Yes”

January 10, 2016 Uncategorized

I spoke to a female executive who told me about a novel strategy she used a few times in her career when she was feeling stuck or burnt out. She made a vow to say “Yes” to everything that came her way for one month.

The first time she used her “Just say yes” strategy, someone asked her to join a volunteer group that would be entertaining female inmates at Riker’s Island over the Christmas holidays. Now, “Susan” didn’t want to spend the holidays in such a grim setting, but she had made her vow.

So she said, “YES!”

On the bus ride to the prison with other volunteers, Susan sat next to another executive who became instrumental in her career and life as a mentor, and who helped her get unstuck in her job.


Searching for Insight

January 8, 2016 Uncategorized

Today, there is a constant drive toward innovation – and not just from the product development folks either. In world-class companies like PepsiCo, we all feel the pressure not just to execute well in the present but to help come up with innovative ideas to keep on top tomorrow.

Historically how to get innovative insights eluded scientists. Of course, we’ve all had our “Aha” moments, but some people seem to be better at coming up with innovations and creative solutions.

Is there a way to cultivate an innovative mindset?

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