Create your own Personal Identity

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If you wish to move up the ladder of success, it is very important to create your own identity, something like marketing experts emphasize the importance of creating a ‘brand’ of an individual product, in order to establish its identity in a crowded consumer market. Similarly if you are hunting for a job or want to get promotion in the crowded labor market, it is important to create your own identity, so that you can be recognized just like any well-known ‘brand’.

If you wish to move up the ladder of success, it is very important to create your own identity, something like marketing experts emphasize the importance of creating a ‘brand’ of an individual product, in order to establish its identity in a crowded consumer market. Similarly if you are hunting for a job or want to get promotion in the crowded labor market, it is important to create your own identity, so that you can be recognized just like any well-known ‘brand’.

Most people think branding is taking a hot iron and searing your flesh, but when I talk about personal branding I mean taking an idea of who you are and searing it into the minds of your employer and co-workers. Branding is making sure everyone in the profession and the workplace knows who you are, what you do and what makes you unique.

Establishing yourself by having a strong identity can be very effective. People are hired and promoted not only based on performance but also on perception. There are employees who have done fantastic job but do not move ahead and there also are employees who have done mediocre work but now hold top jobs. That is where your identity or branding comes in, what people think of you is what allows you to get job or promotion.

To change your personal identity or to create a new one, first decide who you are and what you want to be known for and then to make sure every step you take is consistent with that image.

I can cite my own experience in a company where there were more than 200 executives working at various levels. Some of them were really excellent at what they do, but unfortunately few people knew about it. Even if it was known to some of them they were best-kept secret in the company. As a matter of fact these executives themselves were very shy to tell about their achievements and whatever they did, was never known to the people who matters.

And there were also few other clever executives whose only job was to keep track on the progress of such hard-working people and befriend with them to know the details of their work. Then they used to tom-tom about those activities at various circles as if they have conceptualized the whole idea. As a matter of fact the top management really perceived them as real achiever.

One man was director of sales at the same company and had been in the job for four to five years, which means he was ignored. He wanted to be Vice President of sales. So to brand himself better, he increased his visibility. He sent memos to his staff on how to improve their sale skills. He conducted a in-house sales seminar, open to every one. Thus he increased his networking contacts. Within six months he was promoted to the post as he wanted.

I asked him how does he want to identify himself in the organization. He described himself as “CEO-sales techniques.” Believe me there were much better sales professionals available in the company but yet his views were considered with more seriousness in every sales projection meetings. He had created so much impact in the mind of every one by creating his strong identity, which was too difficult wall to be crossed by anybody.

Although changing your professional title is one step in creating your personal identity, it is an excellent start. That is why I have come up with some upgraded names for jobs that need to have more visibility:

1. Secretary: CEO of Office Management
2. Project Manager: CEO of getting things done
3. Registered nurse: CEO in –charge of healing.
4. Middle Manager: CEO of Cleaning Up after Top Executives.

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