Here’s an Action Question we’re working on with a busy Strategy client today… “How do I get away from busy un-productivity?” The busier we are the harder it becomes to prioritise and stick to it. We need to get real clarity on the goal and from that, clarity of plan – tune out the distractions, last minute requests and everyone else’s priorities and demands. Know the next step to take, be really clear on what you need to do to get to that goal.
If it’s a work project, how often do we get “busy in the weeds”, when we really need to ensure the next key steps are 100% clear to you and agreed upon by everyone on your team. Make sure everyone understands the “Why” behind what you’re trying to achieve and knows who is responsible for which elements.
JUST FOR YOU
Just for you – Take Time To Reflect – schedule a couple of minutes at the end of each day and each week, to consider what went well and not so well. Mark yourself for effective use of time, especially billable time. Where did you lose time and why? Where/why/how were you distracted? Were you procrastinating, and if so, what caused you to do this? For me, I know I procrastinate when I don’t know what the next step is or if I do know it, I don’t know how to do it. This now goes straight on my “Fix It” list… I either learn it, or I find an expert (and build my network at the same time!).
Everything’s so loud now and so instantaneous that it’s getting harder and harder to stand out. The level of competition is fierce, it’s global and it’s To be seen, to be heard and to be valued amongst your competitors in the eye of a small number of potential clients.
Branding on a business-level is common, but today branding is becoming just as important on a personal level. After all, you might work for a business that works with other businesses, but it’s people working with people and that’s what makes business relationships valuable. Even if you have your own company, with a great brand, you, yourself need to stand out.
Remember: “People Do Business with People”
So, how can you go about building a great Personal Brand that stands out, is authentic, is valuable, relevant and engaging?
IT’S ALL ABOUT YOU:
What are your drivers? Your Values? Your Key Descriptors? Stay away from all those wonderfully dull, overused words; Professional, Team Player, Good Communicator. Everyone is all of these things surely? You want to stand out.
No – You NEED to stand out!
Aim to discover words that describe you, drive you and are a bit of a stretch for you. These will be your descriptors and will remind you at every touch point what you want people to get from their interactions with you. Find words that are Emotional rather than Functional. You’ll always bond with someone a lot faster over emotional connections.
Try out descriptors/drivers like;
Curious, Exciting, Kind, Welcoming, Empowering. They are all action based emotive descriptors. Before you go into that next Big Deal Meeting – Remind yourself of these words, Be these words and Stretch to Fit these words.
WHO WILL CONNECT WITH YOU?
The next area to really look closely at is who are you dealing with? Who is your Audience? Now, that may seem clearly straight forward. Your Customer – the one you really want to buy from you. But everyone in business (Business Owner, Manager, Entrepreneur, Solopreneur, Blue Chip Sales Director) has numerous audiences, some more critical to the “Yes Decision” than others. But ignore your Influencers, Connectors, Detractors and Advocates at your peril.
Make the effort to delineate those audiences, clearly. What they value, where they have knowledge gaps, what they worry about, what comes between them and a “Yes Decision”, who they need to impress, what’s relevant for them.
Use this information to craft your personal brand that is engaging, valuable, authentic and relevant. Build a series of messages based on your brand for each of these audiences. Show them that you are of interest and of value to them. Prove to them that you are a giver, a helper, a connector. Be authentic to yourself, your beliefs and values in a way that shows you to be the best match for them. In a way that is energising, engaging and clear. Be clear and concise in your Personal Brand. It must be easily understood by you and by those who meet you. It must be consistent, every time I meet you I know what you’ll be like; Don’t let me down, don’t confuse me or disappoint me.
A great authentic Personal Brand is the best calling card you can possibly have. Now all you have to do is get it out there!
Carol is a very hugely respected, award winning, keynote speaker in the areas of Personal Branding, Strategy, Communications, Executive Presence and LinkedIn. She has a huge passion for what she does and for the clients she works with. From C-Suite Personal Branding work to Communications Strategy projects and her Advisory roles, she brings all her energy, enthusiasm and focus to her work.