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The word ‘person’ is a brand – a created image. “Human” is a generic brand, and it takes wisdom to create a niche for yourself.

We never leave anyone or anywhere ‘perception-less’ or ‘impression-less’. Perceptions are effortlessly created. We naturally create impressions (it is a default response to stimuli). We do not have to be intentional, whether we communicate or not, impressions and perceptions find a way to build.

The subject of personal branding becomes particularly important when we realize that we are not at liberty to choose whether people think about us or not, because THEY DO. I define personal branding as an intentional, strategic, and coherent approach to managing people’s perceptions and impressions about you. A simple definition, right? As individuals, we are like our businesses, we can be a ‘top brand’ or not.

Personal branding a cultivated effort and a flow concept, you keep building it. When I began being intentional about my career development, I did not start by getting a degree (that’s 4 years), I started building a ‘personal brand’ and education was just one of the many ways I did.

As a “person”, your brand is a strong point of contact. What do people know you for? If a stranger looks at your profile, how will they describe you? Three years ago, in my 4th year in school, I got a part-time job as a blogger for a wedding planning company. We only had a phone interview and within a few hours I got the job. A few weeks later, I had to resign because I got caught up with school and leadership activities. My interviewer (now the MD of the company) understood very well and guess what? Three years later, a woman I have never met physically keeps referring clients to me (well-paying ones even). She speaks so highly of me and sometimes I am just amazed what she knows about me. She has been exposed to a brand.

Be intentional about your product. You are not selling your skills or knowledge; you are selling you. How much value you can attract is based on how much value you can offer.

Be your own marketer and attract what you want!

Some Tips for Personal Branding

  • Define your person (pay attention to your areas
    of interests, skills, hobbies, and experience)
  • Research (Find more information about your
    external environment that is relevant to your person)
  • Set your goals: Find a strategy to your ideal
    customer (i.e., company, individuals, etc)
  • Build a suitable profile (Your CV/resume,
    LinkedIn Profile, personal website, etc are platforms to intentionally create a
    verbal & visual identity.)
  • Be socially active: Volunteer for a good course,
    subscribe to your ideal company newsletter or events, join a good campaign.
  • Update your profile: Let the labour market find
    you growing. Keep learning, keep growing!

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