Is Personal Branding the Flavor of the Day?

Is Personal Branding the Flavor of the Day?

As a former marketing director, I have instinctively encouraged all of my clients to use “Madison Avenue” advertising techniques to enhance their visibility within an organization or even more important when they’re searching for their next position within a company. I ask them:

• Who’s your target audience? Perhaps your boss, your boss’s boss, peers with influence, the boss’s admin, leaders in departments you’d like to move into?

• How do you communicate with your target? This could be e-mail, informal communication via chatting, leading cross-functional projects, writing articles for the newsletter?

• How are you seen within the organization and within your department?


You hear this everywhere…companies talk about their branding or re-branding and now we’re all hearing that in order to manage your career and be “seen” within an organization you need to develop your brand. Is this just corporate “double- speak” or does this really mean something?

Yes, it’s “corporate double speak” and yes it’s essential… So in order to start your own branding process, ask yourself these questions:

• What am I known for at my company (within your department and outside your department)?

• What am I considered an expert on?

• What do people come to me for?

• When co-workers see me, what does my appearance communicate about me?

• When I speak and write do I communicate in a way that reflects my brand?

By now you might be shaking your head and wondering what does this mean to me? This is especially true if you’ve been one of the essential “silent troops” who can always be counted on to get the work done, but do not get recognized for promotion.

Your problem may be that you’ve not taken charge of your career. You’ve been complacent and secure and perhaps you’re wondering why you’re stuck. Start with this paradigm shift:

You are the CEO of company ‘You’. Take charge of your brand!


• Find unmet needs in your department and pitch a project. Or volunteer for a project no one else wants to do. Rock this project-create a unique presentation that presents the results.

• Increase your skills-if you’re not adding tools to your toolkit, you can become a less desirable employee.

• Connect with people outside of your area that might help you to network when a posting opens up and you want to go for it. Join the softball team, volunteer for a charity out of your cubicle.

• Communicate with your boss on your new “rebranded” goals and ask them for their feedback and support’

• Find a mentor. Most successful people have had a more senior person give them advice on maneuvering the political waters.