In the American west cattle ranchers “brand” each head of cattle to mark it as their own. The “brand” is literally burned into the hide of each animal and once branded it is permanent.
We, you and me and everyone we know, have a brand too. It’s our personal brand. It’s not burned into us but it does tend to get burned into the minds of those we deal with. Now here’s something that ought to make you think a bit, it might even scare you a little: Everything you say and everything you do either adds to or subtracts from your brand image.
When you’re really good at something, say speaking for instance, you are recognized (branded) as a good speaker. Many things, how you speak, what you say, what you do and how you do it not only affect your personal brand but can actually become your personal brand.
Not all parts of a personal brand however are created equal. There is one part that stands out above all others. It’s called integrity.
When you do what you say you will do your brand becomes stronger. When you commit to doing something and then don’t do it your brand is weakened. You can excel in any other area but if you lack integrity your personal brand will never be as strong as it could be.
Now, if you’re like me you don’t spend much time each time thinking about how your actions (or lack of actions) are going to affect your brand. But perhaps you should.
I know it’s not possible to spend every minute of every day building your brand, but if you’ll commit even a few minutes a day to consider strategies to better develop your personal brand it will make a positive difference in almost everything you do.
Whether you know it or not you have a personal brand, it precedes you everywhere you go and it hangs around after you’ve left the scene. As long as you have to have a brand, why not do what you can to make it a strong one?