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“Your brand is what other people say about you when you're not in the room” – Jeff Bezos.
I have to thank Jeff, as I have not found a better way to explain personal brands in all the years I have been exploring the subject.
There are a few things we need to understand (from my point of view and experience) when it comes to brand:
6.A powerful brand relies on confidence (not to be confused with arrogance)
So how do we authentically enhance our brand value?
B –Build skill sets
The working world has changed so much in the last few years and will continue to do so. In fact the prediction is that in 5 years’ time, only 15% of what you know right now will still be relevant. So, continuous development is not a “nice to have” but a survival strategy. Development no longer has to cost money; there are tons of free resources available. It will now require time, discipline and commitment.
We also need to be aware that in the future there will be more focus on what we called “soft skills” a few years ago (as it will be assumed that you already have the technical ability) [See WEF Top 10 Skills for 2020 - https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/01/the-10-skills-you-need-to-thrive-in-the-fourth-industrial-revolution/) so take that into account when planning your development.
We have also just entered the Connection Economy (check out Seth Godin’s video for more information about this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sKXZgTzEyWY) which will bring radical shifts in the way we work and connect with others. Creating new skills sets and being able to apply them with generosity and enthusiasm will definitely give you the edge.
R – Reputation management
When we look at reputation management we need to think about how we communicate (in the real world and online), the standard of work we consistently produce, our ethics, how organised and punctual we are and most importantly OUR attitude.
It is not what you do on the days you feel good that determines your reputation; it is what you do daily. The small activities, words and actions accumulate to form the picture. The old saying goes “Hard work beats talent, when talent does not work hard”
These are major factors that influence not only our own brands but also the co-brand that we have with our manager/s, but that is a blog for another day.
A – Authenticity
No one likes a fake; it is true no matter where you go in the world. A truly amazing brand cannot be a projection, imitation or a mirage. It is ok to talk a good game but you MUST be able to back it up with consistent action. Find your own voice, your own unique talents and contributions and bring them into your work. Don’t be a copy. People pay good money for originals, not cheap knock-offs.
In our roles “who you know” is extremely important. Having a strong, reliable network helps you solve problems, find opportunities, grow relationships and organically enhances your brand (IF YOU ARE ADDING VALUE TO YOUR NETWORK).
Networking should be done online (there is a very dynamic, active and diverse group of assistants online from across the globe and it is easy to plug into these groups via LinkedIn or Facebook) but importantly, networking should also be done in the real world. Take time to attend events, speak to people you have not met before in the office (even just a friendly greeting will do) and take opportunities to grow your circle. Your network = your net worth, it doesn’t matter how great you are if no one knows about you. I am not encouraging you to brag but to be confident and to OWN IT!
D – Dependability
A brand is nothing if you are not consistent. Being phenomenal today and poor tomorrow doesn’t serve you, as you are not dependable and you are therefore eroding trust. If you can’t be a star everyday then pick a level you are comfortable with and stay in that zone until you are ready to level up. This applies to work that you produce; commitments made and kept, communication, your personal appearance and emotional intelligence.
If you are wondering how healthy your current brand is please feel free to do the FREE Brand Health Assessment at http://www.anelmartin.co.za/brand-health-assessment.html
There are things we want, things we richly deserve and opportunities which present, which we simply do not take.
Why? What is REALLY holding us back?
If you look back on 2017 you will no doubt have some unfinished business. A goal you only partially achieved (or not at all), an opportunity you did not take (and regret) or a project you started and did not complete. We tell ourselves things like; I got busy or I did not have enough...(insert your perceived lack here). While some of this may be true we are actually held back by deeper issues.
My hope is that by shining a light on these factors we can set the scene for 2018, making this our YEAR OF GOAL ACHIEVING
This is in my opinion our biggest stumbling block. Fear has a purpose, our bodies are engineered to feel and respond to fear as it ensures the survival of the species. Fear is a primal and necessary driver but in the modern age it can hold us back from many magnificent things.
Fear manifests as the belief that we cannot do it, we don't deserve it, people will laugh at us. I should not stand out, I should not speak up. Fear can also present in a much more sly way, it can present as procrastination or what appears to be a lack of focus. Fear will create excuses, fear will erode confidence.
So how do we engage with fear?
2. Lack of self confidence
As adults the message has become so ingrained that you MUST NOT MAKE MISTAKES, if you do, you are a failure. But sadly this teaching has created people who innovate less, create less and have no self confidence. This is the little voice that holds you back from trying to do something in a new way or making a suggestion in a management meeting. It is the thing that holds you back from asking for help or feeling that you deserve the thing you are striving for. Critically for us this is also the factor that holds us back from new (and often great) opportunities. This is a big factor that sabotages your success.
Engaging with low confidence:
3. Lack of Resources
As a coach (who does a lot of work with clients on goal setting) I can tell you for free today that if you start the goal with needing resources, you will NEVER achieve it. If you focus on resources (you don't have) you automatically give away control to external forces and already set your excuses up for not doing the thing you really want.
Yes, some goals will require money, time or a solid network but you need to focus on what you can control which is your own resourcefulness.
4. Lack of Focus, Motivation and Discipline
I love the Mel Robbin's Ted Talk in which she says "you need to parent yourself because you are NEVER going to feel like it" You are going to have to make it happen. It will not magically manifest without you doing the work.
Getting it DONE!
I really hope that these observations, thoughts and tips will help you during 2018 (OUR YEAR OF GOAL ACHIEVING) but feel free to get in touch if you need one on one coaching with your goals in 2018. This is my passion and I would really like to help you create the life and career you really want.
WISHING YOU A VERY HAPPY
So, until next time
HUGS FROM DXB