3 Reasons You Need to Manage Your Personal Brand
By Linda Descano
Executive Vice President at Red Havas
Over the past few years, I’ve had the opportunity to speak with executive coaches and personal brand strategists from across the U.S. on a topic near and dear to my heart: personal branding.
Whether you or I like it or not, right now, at this exact minute, we have a brand, and we communicate it in everything we do. As a dear friend and executive coach recently reminded me, we must remain vigilant in proactively and strategically manage our brand, no matter how great things are today. Just in case you need some convincing, I consolidated the top three reasons cited in my virtual listening tour for why it’s important to stay on top of your brand:
- Consistency. As Selena Rezvani, author of PUSHBACK and The Next Generation of Women Leaders, noted when we spoke, our brand may be on point with the goals and vision we have for ourselves or it may differ wildly — reason #1 for why it’s important to manage your brand. “Consider what the chatter is about you when you leave a room,” advises Selena. “Ask others how they know you to be, what comes to mind when they think of you, and see if it matches your own vision. At a minimum, acknowledge and accept the brand you’ve sculpted up to this point and use it as a baseline for managing future change and progress.” Kathleen McQuiggan, Senior Vice President of Pax World Management, reinforced this point: “Managing your brand enables you to manage others perceptions of you, clear and simple.”
- Credibility. Diane Baranello, former NYWICI board member and President of Coaching for Distinction, noted, “It’s important to have a genuine personal brand because without it you lose credibility. When you’re no longer credible, people don’t believe what you say. You lose truth and when you do, you lose trust, which is the basis for all lasting relationships. When clients, colleagues, friends believe in ‘you’ as a brand, they trust your message. When your brand is inconsistent or inauthentic, that trust is broken and your promise of value is compromised.”
- Effectiveness. To the always-pragmatic Nanci Raphael, author of Entrepreneur’s Guide to Mastering the Inner World of Business, a strong personal brand will help you understand yourself better, help you understand what motivates and inspires you, and will save you time, energy and resources, because you will have clarity about the people you want to attract and work with and the opportunities you want to pursue.