My first reading comes from a Forbes article from 2012, the First Steps to Building Your Personal Brand. The article gives some great questions to ask yourself as you are building your brand. The first step is to create your brand mantra. You want it to be short & easy.
I’m going to answer these in future tense, as in how to I want to be seen, not how I think I’m seen right now.
- How do I make people feel?
- I want to make people feel like they are important, that they have good ideas. I want people to feel comfortable around me.
- How do people benefit by working with me?
- I want people to walk away from working with me thinking about something in a new way; provide some give and take to build off of each other to create something or solve a problem.
- What words do others use to describe me?
- Thinker. Creative. Thoughtful. Questioning.
- What field or industry am I in (or do I want to be in)?
- Human Resources. Change Management.
- What are the words I would use to describe my work?
- Looking for new ways to do our work. Process Improvement. Help others work smarter.
- Who is my target audience?
- Business leaders. Those who think HR is all about the paper.
- What service do I have to offer people?
- So right now, I’m reading Patrick Lencioni‘s book “The Four Obsessions of an Extraordinary Executive” and he is asking similar questions at the corporate level. It’s weird to think of it in this way – what do I offer people? What do I WANT to offer my people, at work? I want to be more accessible to them. I want them to trust me. I need to figure out how to get out into their world more, out in the shop — popcorn didn’t work, maybe if I bring them cookies? I’m open to ideas of how to better reach the shop guys. I know they are still suspicious of the office I sit in and I need to figure out how to bridge that gap. So I really don’t know the answer to this question yet. I need to figure it out.
- What do I do that makes me stand out from everyone else?
- Again, future tense, how do I want to stand out from everyone else? How can I differentiate myself not just from the person who previously held this role, but from other HR professionals? From other HR bloggers?
- I want to be seen as thoughtful, honest, straightforward.
- Patrick Lencioni talks about needing to be Hungry, Humble and Smart. I think I’ve become the Lovable Slacker as I feel like I’ve lost the hunger, the drive. I’ve let circumstances take it away as I wait around for something to happen. I am hoping that this blog and this exercise of personal branding will help with that hunger!