Strong Brands Look Successful

The concept of dress for success is dead! Or is it? Granted, looking successful isn't only about what you wear. It’s how you show up in every sense of the word. How you behave. Ways you communicate. Ideas you share. It’s the whole package of who you are and how you demonstrate your brand – authentically. Having said that, let me zero in on what matters about your clothing choices. 1 – EVERYTHING COUNTS Make certain your clothing fits. If you’ve gained a few pounds, gain a few new outfits. Wear clothing that suits your style. If your brand is artistic, show your panache with color or accessories. If you’re conservative, stay with traditional pieces. If you’re in I.T. with no customer contact, jeans may fit the bill. But never be sloppy or disheveled. Your clothing speaks volumes before you ever open your mouth. Do you wear your clothing or does your clothing wear you? If it’s outlandish or distracting, tone it down or cover it up. 2 – STICK TO YOUR BUDGET Have … [Read more...]

Looking to Elevate Your Personal Brand? Here Are 5 Things You Need to Quit Now

Often career experts talk about what I call the rainbows and butterflies version of having a successful career, but this doesn’t show the complete picture. What usually happens is that the emotional challenges that come with change are treated like a movie extra when in fact it plays a lead role. While I’m all for the “you can do it approach,” I also think we need to address the importance of having the right mindset when it comes to making a career move. You can do everything right on paper but still not make any progress because mental roadblocks are holding you back. Here are some things you must quit if you want to move forward and elevate your personal brand. 1. Ignoring Your Personal Brand   Most people don’t set out to build their personal brand because it’s a fun wishlist item. It’s usually because they want more of something they’re currently not getting enough of—be it money, opportunities, or freedom. Whether you openly accept this fact or begrudge the thought … [Read more...]

4 Tips for Being Comfortable at Events

Research tells us that 60% of people in America are shy when it comes to attending events with a room full of strangers! Does that make you feel better? Additionally, 75% said they don’t know what to talk about and 40% are anxious even when they know people in the room.  So, if you aren’t comfortable socializing—you’re not alone. Try these proven tips that are part of my Professional Presence program. 1. Know your value. Recognize and appreciate your BRAND ATTRIBUTES that could include your talents, gifts, expertise and wonderfulness. Own them and walk into that room full of strangers knowing YOU have VALUE that you could bring to others. What are those things about you that someone might find compelling? What brand impression do you want to leave with new people in your life? How can you let others know where you shine? Don’t diminish those things that come easily for you and maybe not for others. Things like: You know a lot of people You have expertise in a subject You … [Read more...]

Does Your LinkedIn Profile Pass the Seven Second Rule?

You may already know it takes about seven seconds to make a good first impression, but are you considering this rule when it comes to your digital brand? LinkedIn is further putting this to the test with its new design. In case you haven’t noticed, LinkedIn has switched things up again. But this time it’s not just a matter of playing hide-and-go-seek with common features. You may also need to update your profile. A noticeable change impacts the way your Summary displays (or should I say, does not display). Now, anyone who visits your profile will only see a teaser of your Summary. To see your full Summary, your audience will have to click “See more." Otherwise, approximately 90 to 200 characters will show depending on whether your profile is viewed on a mobile application or desktop. Although this concept is new to LinkedIn, it’s used for other platforms. For example, on Forbes, an author's bio is a one-liner, and you have to click a link to read the full bio. (You can see … [Read more...]

This is How a Brand Walks its Talk!

It is pure joy working with clients who show their “leadership presence” in so many ways. Recently, while at a Fortune 500 energy company, the leaders demonstrated their values of being committed to success, doing what's right, and being respectful. Here are some examples of how these values have served them well.   From the moment I arrived at their corporate headquarters, the front desk security guards were friendly and welcoming. One of the executive assistants had everything set up at the workshop PLUS food delivered to me personally during our coaching sessions. Both groups of participants – senior executives and high potential candidates – were totally engaged throughout our Personal Branding program called, Make Your Mark & Make It Count! Respect was evident even walking their halls receiving a friendly hello along the way. It’s all about CULTURE – and this is evidence of a brand walking their talk in every way. Valerie Sokolosky is … [Read more...]