4 Ways Your Personal Brand Wins with No

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Without a doubt technological advancements, especially in digital media, have expanded the way business is carried out. Never before have business transactions and communication been so quick, effective, and cheap. A lot of small businesses and entrepreneurs have this digital revolution to thank, given the ease of starting up a new business endeavor. With the help of digital technology, a business can be run with little startup money and the staff of one. However, this convenience in small business has also brought about a new problem: saying no to work. Refusing work for small business can be a real issue for young entrepreneurs looking to establish their brands in a very competitive market. The fear of losing clients very easily leads some businesses to fear to saying no. Instances for saying no As a small business, you want to establish credibility with your clients, and make a name for yourself. Given your nature, you will very likely focus on your strengths, and not think … [Read more...]

4 Ingredients for You to Matter More and Be Relevant

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As we each forge ahead daily, there is a constant nagging question for all of us.  Do we matter? Recently, I had the chance to read Relevance by Phil Styrlund, Tom Hayes, and Marian Deegan. Last year, BrandMirror sponsored a TEDx event where I saw Phil speak about Relevance. The talk was a captivating one, and since then I have stayed in touch with Marian as they have been on this journey to help others matter more. The book is engaging, just right as far as length, and provides a powerful formula to help us each matter more. The formula highlights 4 key factors of relevance: authenticity, mastery, empathy, and action. When we assess our relevance, this simple formula is a way to identify quickly where we might need to double down our efforts or celebrate our progress. 1. Authenticity You know when you go to an event or hear someone speak and it just does not resonate or feel real? We want people to speak from the heart and from experience. People who are able to be … [Read more...]

It Takes a Strong Brand to Stand Up

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How can you maintain your standards when you are asked to do something against your values? Remember what being authentic means. It means you are very clear about what is important to you knowing that your values are what you take with you every day wherever you go. They are your operating principles. It takes a strong brand to stand up for your beliefs when your values are being compromised. It takes an even stronger one to know that values SHOULD be respected. Your brand is composed of your values, stories, talents, life experiences, interests, etc. By taking a professional approach, not only are you exuding your authentic brand, but you are expressing leadership. Here is a story one of our readers sent me along with this Four Way test: I've noticed that the people I get along with the best are those with the same values I have. The times I've had conflict have often been due to the fact that I have a different standard than the other person. For example, I resist telling … [Read more...]

How to Evaluate Criticism When Your Personal Brand Is Under Attack

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Imagine being a child and having to present a drawing in front of your peers. You pour your heart into a family portrait filled with various sized stick figures, a beautifully shaped 3-D boxed house, and a tree. As you hold it up proudly, you hear the oohs and ahhs of how great it is. Then what comes next? Someone says the tree should be green, not the shade of brown you used. And the house should be beige instead of pink. And the sun should be yellow, not purple. Quickly, the feeling of pride turns into disappointment. Why would anyone be so mean about something so personal? Well, the same can be said when you present your personal brand. When you put yourself out there, you are vulnerable to criticism or "opinions." It can sometimes come as a surprise when you're attacked for being who you are, whether it's how you dress, write, process information, or express your ideas. Aren't we supposed to embrace what makes us unique? Dare I even say, "special"? Apparently, that’s not … [Read more...]

Does Information Cause Transformation?

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I’ve been thinking about the reason I enjoy executive coaching so much. Yes, I enjoy watching people move forward in their careers. Yes, it’s humbling to know I’ve made a difference in how people think or behave – habits they learn to change. But above all these things – my love for coaching comes from seeing someone do something that is transformational. Here’s a recent example. I’ve changed the name to protect the innocent, as they say. Bill was a middle manager in a Fortune 100 company who was burned out, frustrated at what wasn’t happening that he thought should be happening, and ready to give up a good paying job. His complaints were partially well founded. Bill’s boss did not agree that he was ready for a new role. He had sought a promotion and was turned down. “You have not demonstrated that you are ready to manage a larger part of our organization,” he was told. Add to that Bill was bored with what seemed mundane work and mindless tasks that were below his level of … [Read more...]