The Me-Brand

It's all about Me (photo from istockphoto.com, 2010)

I had never heard about personal branding until last month when I attended a workshop at Henley Business School. The idea of it was simple but it spoke volumes to me. It brought to the surface the fact that we are all different, unique and shouldn’t be ashamed or uncomfortable about that at all. Personal branding is selling yourself to your best ability; identifying that thing that only you can bring to a job, a business, or even a relationship. your personal brand. Prof. David James of Henley Business School calls it “Myography”. I must say that discovering this gave me a sense of relief (that it was alright to be different, in fact it was fantastic!) but at the same time, I struggled to decide what it was about me that was unique. What can I do better than anyone else??? It’s a toughie.

I came home and explored a little more about on the web (thank God for blogs etc). I came across www.personalbrandingblog.com. It was timely because sitting at the top of the blog posts was one called “A Cup of Coffee to Having an Enemy”. The author of the post, Wendy Brache said this,

‘Having an enemy is often one of the best ways to solidify your own brand. We can’t be everything to everybody, nor should we want to be…’

Being comfortable being you is standing up for yourself and out of the crowd- you are being authentic. This may seem trivial or even a no-brainer but in the world of business it is absolutely crucial. For example, when you start a business, or invent a product or offer a service, you immediately have to decide the people you will say ‘no’ to.  Again, you cannot be everything to everybody because not everybody will like what you have to offer. The good news is that some folks definitely will if you’ve done any amount of market research! So what do I offer that no one else does? I still don’t have the answer but this is part of my addictive journey. And maybe part of the answer is that I will find out in time, as I take risks, fail and succeed. Stay tuned!

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