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“In order to be successful today we have to make reinvention a constant part of our repertoire.”-Dorie Clark
Do you think personal brands are only for the likes of Dr. Phil, Oprah Winfrey and CEOs? Think again. In today’s workplace we all have a personal brand, and too few of us are managing it. So says our guest for today’s show, Dorie Clark.
Dorie is the author of Reinventing You, a former presidential campaign spokeswoman and regular contributor to Harvard Business Review, Forbes and Entrepreneur magazine. Today we cover what a personal brand is, how to discover yours and recreate it to your liking, the wingman strategy and so much more on the 333rd episode of The Art of Charm.
While you may not think you have or even need a personal brand, today’s workplace demands it. Long gone are the days of working for one company for the duration of your career. The working world is in the midst of a new era, a world where workers are a commodity and you have to set yourself apart from the rest. And the best way to do so is through your personal brand.
Dorie Clark says to manage and truly benefit from your personal brand you first need to understand what a personal brand is, then find out what yours is and then either recreate it or find ways to bridge the gap between your personal brand as it stands today and the personal brand you want to be in the world.
On the first point she says a personal brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room, it’s what you leave people with. Your personal brand is synonymous with your reputation and it acts as career insurance. No longer can we rely on loyalty and mentorship to bring us up through a company’s ranks. Often our mentors are let go or leave for a different position and if we’ve solely relied on them to teach us and spread the word about who we are and what we’re committed to, we’re left in the lurch when they go.
To avoid being in that position, Dorie says to find out what your personal brand is and then either reinvent yourself if you don’t like it or bridge the gap between what your brand is today and where you want it to take you tomorrow. An easy way to discover your personal brand is by asking at least six people close to you (family, friends, co-workers including your boss) the three words they’d use to describe you.
When you do so it’ll be revealing and you’ll see patterns. Take stock of those patterns and then start to think about where you want to go. Envision it and get clear, then create a narrative about it so you can explain to people how your past matches up to the current opportunity you’re either working on or working towards.
Once you’ve done that, take the necessary steps to move you from your place today to your vision of tomorrow. According to Dorie this approach, actually working on your personal brand, gives you a significant advantage over almost everyone else and is worth your effort.
Dorie also fills us in on the wingman strategy. A lot of you may know this as it applies to dating, but Dorie says we can use it in the business world as well. Wherever you use this strategy it works in the same way. You and a friend attend an event together (dating or work-related) and while you’re talking with others, you bring up your friend’s most salient and relevant points during the conversation.
By doing so you’re giving them status in the other person’s eyes, then later you introduce your friend to the person you mentioned them to. It works best if you know who you want to meet prior to or at the beginning of the event, and then you team up to meet each other’s interests. It’s a relevant strategy we’ve discussed on the show, and it also works exceptionally well in a networking environment!
Dorie provides additional insightful strategies and relevant strategies on this episode, including how to command respect and attention before you attend a meeting (even if no one knows you) and the most common mistake most people make in their personal branding. It was a pleasure to have Dorie on the show, I want to thank her for joining us and to thank you for being here too. Enjoy the episode and we’ll see you next time.
Reinventing You, Dorie Clark’s latest book
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