By Hanan Awaad
Your business is your busy-ness. Meaning, whether you choose to work for someone else, be your boss or stay home to care for a child or an elder, you are in business. And in every interaction, you reflect your personal brand and your brand reflects your values.
William Shakespeare says: ‘Sometimes when are labeled, when we are branded our brand becomes our calling’; and here is exactly where I start my new story every time I decide to write one. I start thinking of how I want to be remembered by others. I imagine, what feelings people endure when they meet me, talk to me and interact with me and this becomes my calling.
CUT THE NOISE, FOCUS ON THE BUILDING BLOCKS
To build your brand, you need to tell your story. Your story will provide to context … the context will create a meaning … and the meaning will help you establish the kind of relationships you need in your life and your journey to success. But on many occasions, our lives will be filled with noise that will take our focus away from the important things. And here comes the important role of your values in setting your priorities. You do not need to chase what is catchy, in-trend or what others perceive important; you need to be true to yourself and what makes you happy and content.
Think of your personal brand as a magnificent piece of art of mosaic, a well-designed compilation of smaller elements. Your education, training, and readings will determine how do you build your body of knowledge. The time you spend on perfecting your craft will determine how skillful you are in your field. And your willingness to learn will determine how fast you grow.
When you put your knowledge, your skills and your attitudes into action, supported by your values, you will create your personal brand. Only at that time, when all these elements work together in a harmonious authentic way, people will believe in you, value you and will stay loyal to you and your business.
YOUR E-BRAND MATTERS
Some working women think that by not being active on social media, they are protecting their personal brand. They believe that being happy and successful in your life doesn’t need to be communicated or validated through social networks. However, our e-brands are created the moment we got our first email address, and it continues to grow. When you say that you work in company XYZ, people will visit company XYZ’s website to learn what kind of corporate you are associated with, what kind of organizational culture you work in, what kind of customers you are serving. When you say that you grew up in that town up north, people will check Google maps, read about that city in this wikis and will add another block to your brand as a sophisticated urban person or a lame girl from a tiny town.
Social media gives your personal brand different dimensions. If you manage your e-brand well, you will communicate with the universe your passions, inspirations and you will create a ripple effect of what matters to you. The biggest mistake some women fall in thinks that they can separate their personal lives from their professional lives, and their virtual identity from their physical identity. The truth is our virtual world is becoming an integral part of our physical world; both are creating our reality.
So, if you have not done so, start now organizing and decluttering your social media profiles. Treat your virtual identity with the same care you treat with your physical identity. Deal with the aesthetics as well as the foundation. Jarod Kintz in his book ‘This Book is Not for Sale’ said: “Branding is marketing and networking. It’s not marking.” and this is so true when it comes to your e-brand. On social media you are advertising what is important to you and connecting to those you believe are important to you. You build your market presence as well as your network.
EVERYTHING YOU DO MATTER
Your authentic brand will not emerge from your dreams and fantasies; it is shaped by everything you do even when you are alone in your PJs. It is not the cliches we say about fairness, integrity, equality and other big words; it is how we walk the talk and how what we say intertwines with what we do.
How you spend your time determines your attitude towards life. If you waste your time on insignificant matters, your attitude to life will be: life is insignificant. But we you choose your activities carefully you will feed what is making you stronger, confident and fruitful.
Originally posted 2016-02-27 17:51:17.