What is it?

Having a good professional reputation is an obvious key to success, but many people don’t take the time to nurture it. Or they don’t know how to.

It can be helpful to think about a reputation as a personal brand. In this sense developing your own authentic and unique brand is considered not a luxury but an essential for future employability, progress in life and success as defined by you.

In this sense your personal brand is You. A brand stands for something and delivers value.

It is who you are made up of a complex tapestry of aspects such as your image, persona, attitude, skills, individuality, traits, behaviours and actions. These factors all lead to how you are perceived by others.

For example, think about how you might be seeing other people right now (friends, family, work colleagues) and maybe even subliminally “brand” them with any one or any combination of labels like these:

  1. Respected leader
  2. Trusted advisor
  3. Unreliable
  4. Dependable
  5. Safe
  6. Risky
  7. Technical expert
  8. Pragmatic deliverer
  9. Effective strategist
  10. Creative challenger
  11. Confident
  12. Intelligent
  13. Charismatic
  14. Indecisive
  15. Open and accessible
  16. Remote or difficult to know
  17. Self centred
  18. Other definitions or labels  you use…….


Your personal brand is what others think about you. When you think about your impact in some depth, you can use this knowledge to determine how other people perceive you instead of the other way around.

Your brand defines the image that others associate with you and reveals what you have to offer.  In a work or market place view it is used to determine your total perceived value and how you measure up to your competitors. Whatever you decide distinguishes you in the marketplace of talent, make sure consistency is the bedrock of your brand

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In this sense, being clear about your personal brand requires excellent self-awareness so that you can squeeze every ounce of equity out of what makes you unique. Furthermore, great brands evolve and have people coming back for more

A precise approach would be to do things well, seek feedback and be seen doing things well

Challenging thought:  

 When do  others think of you, what comes immediately to their mind? 

What words do they use to describe you:  for example – knowledgeable, confident, receptive, dependable and dynamic?

Is that who you are and the image you are trying to portray?

Another factor is your core competency or your primary areas of expertise. You may be proficient in several areas but what are your strongest points?

Some people are dynamic public speakers while others are talented writers. Some people are better at training versus managing. What are your strengths?

A major component is your uniqueness. Defining what sets you apart from others is essential to building your personal brand. Without doing this, others will not be able to differentiate you (from for example – your competition) and you run the risk of letting others or your competition define you.

How to define it 

  • Consider your personality and attitude
  • Think about how you want to live your life
  • Think about the “vibes” you transmit and become highly aware of this
  • Identify your strengths and capitalise on them
  • Understand your limitations and skill gaps and recognise that  we have incredible capacity to change and evolve
  • Help others – be a giver (the old saying is that “givers gain”)
  • Define how you meet particular job market needs
  • Consider how your image can communicate your brand


This is the most nebulous part of a brand. It is more than a combination of novelty and dependability. It has been described as a person’s predisposition to the world. It is about the vibes that you transmit

Attitude is how the brand — “you, inc.” or “organization, inc.” — presents itself to the world. I believe that all brands have boldness about them. Even if a brand is quiet, dependable, and safe, those attributes can be expressed to the marketplace boldly and definitively.

What is your attitude? Have you considered it and identified it? Is the attitude of your brand something that draws others to it, or puts them off?

DNA. Dependability. Novelty. Attitude.

As a first step toward marketing yourself better, take some time soon to write out the DNA of your brand.

For more ideas about personal branding in these great books:



IN SUMMARY :  Learn how to stand out
Your personal brand is what others think about you. When you brand yourself properly, you determine how other people perceive you instead of the other way around. Your brand defines the image that your target audience associates with you and reveals what you have to offer. It is used to determine your total perceived value and how you measure up to your competitors.

Defining your personal brand can also help you to gain strategic positioning within your industry.. Developing a strong personal brand is another way that you can establish yourself as a knowledgeable resource among your peers. Highlight the elements that make you unique from your competition and people will pay special attention to you. Your personal brand will assist you in building your reputation and attaining expert status.


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