Many leaders forget to work on their personal brand when building their company. In fact, many CEOs question why they need to spend time working on a personal brand at all. They find it hard to grasp everyone has a personal brand - even if you work at a firm, a company, a corporation, a small business, or a small office - it doesn't matter. You are still known for certain skills, values, and relationships, and that shapes your personal brand.
Everyone knows that first impressions are second to none. However, contrary to common belief, you actually get two chances at them; when you are first seen; and when you first open your mouth. And being the face of your business, combined with the fact people buy from people, and that Elon Musk has more followers than Tesla, you should heed and do the same.
Because you always want to be portrayed a certain way:
To be socially accepted by like-minded peers
To have a better shot at relationships
To receive that funding
To land that project
To get a promotion
To close the sale
By doing so daily, leveraging the internet and social media can help better present:
Your sense of humor
"Online, you're the product, your presence is an extension of your persona, and your persona is an extension of your business," says Victoria Kennedy, CEO of Victorious PR. "You create a bond, trust, and a relationship with your followers, customers, and network. And everyone around you is a customer. When you're marketing yourself on a daily basis, personal branding is fundamental.
"Think about the field in which you want to build your authority. Understand the conversations and challenges in the industry and identify the latest trends. This will help you share your knowledge with the relevant stakeholders and be seen as an integral part of the industry. Networking is another important aspect. Take every opportunity you have to create meaningful relationships and showcase how you can add value to potential clients."
Preserving your legacy
When people hear the word "legacy", they mostly associate it with finances and wills. And rightfully so; wealth is one of the best ways to leave a legacy, either by donations, charities, or inheritance.
But it could also mean something else entirely.
Life is a gift given to us, and our jobs are an opportunity to amplify the meaning of such a gift. But both life and work are temporary, and for those who neglected that fact, last year was a harsh reminder.
However, a personal brand can help sustain your beliefs, thoughts, and actions through the collective memory pool of the internet, whether it's via social media or blogs - and help amplify your message:
What you stand for
What you fought for
What you believe in
How you communicated it.
This may not seem like much, but as your brand authority continues to grow, so too will your opportunities to make an impact simply by choosing to be yourself where everyone can see it.
When believing and standing for an idea and leveraging the digital age to your advantage, your personal brand is what remains. It has never been more important to build your own personal brand, and now is the perfect time to leverage your skills, knowledge, and the internet to start working toward your (and your organization's) best future.