Your Personal Brand

Contrary to what many career-planning gurus may tell you, your personal brand is not your image.

A brand is a more substantive asset that consists of applying your core competencies, skills, knowledge and experience to one or more specific industries or professions.

Your brand is your unique selling differential.

For example, if you are just an accountant, you’re one of thousands. If you specialize, you create a brand. Do you perform forensic consulting? That’s your brand. Do you help small businesses set up accounting systems? That’s your brand.

Once you know your USD, then you can create an image to go with it.

Are you a just graphic artist? Or are you a magazine designer? Or an e-commerce website specialist? Do you specialize in a specific industry or profession, such as designing websites or brochures for law firms?

Your personal brand (as it relates to your career) does include your image, but you can only project that image once you’ve built your brand.

You need more than “dressing for success” or updating your LinkedIn profile to create a personal brand in your industry or profession.

To get started creating your brand, look at how you can specialize. That might mean taking some certificate courses, or joining a trade association or creating a blog that focuses on one aspect of your field.

Read Steve’s article for GovLoop on 7 Easy Ways to Build Your Personal Brand.

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