Branding is a business buzzword, as no company can survive and thrive without building a brand that the customers know and connect with. However, it is also emerging as a requirement for professionals, specifically top executives and business leaders. They need to create an image that sets them apart and ensures that people remember and recognize them, both at the workplace and in the industry.
Building a personal brand is a worthy effort for a top executive because it makes you more visible at work and enhances the opportunity to boost your career. But achieving these benefits depends on taking the right approach to personal branding. While there isn’t a one-size-fits-all formula to do it, you can follow some tips to carve a niche at the workplace and create an image of an industry leader. Here are the ones that can help.
Personal branding is all about authenticity because it prevails. Whether it is your resume, website, social media page, or interviews, every place must have authentic information. If you stick to the truth, you will never have to worry about consistency. The facts will be the same at all places, so they will only validate your credentials as a professional if someone happens to check them. Moreover, authenticity builds credibility because consistent information at all places presents you as a genuine professional. Credibility is vital for building reputation, which matters more than anything else for people in leadership roles.
Build a holistic presence
When it comes to building a personal brand as a top-level executive, you need to be present everywhere. In other words, you have to be visible to potential recruiters, clients, and team members at places where they are likely to search you. It is great if you can have a personal website, but you can manage without it. Consider building a robust social media presence on professional networks like LinkedIn. Having strong connections with other C-Suite executives adds to your brand value. You can get a step ahead by asking your connections to share favorable reviews. A holistic presence gives you an advantage and enhances your credibility.
Explore your voice
Great leaders are expressive communicators, whether they have to deal one-to-one with people or speak to a crowd at an event. If you want to build a brand, you must explore your voice and enhance your verbal communication skills. Good communication is as much about listening as it is about speaking. So pay attention to what people say as you interact with them and think of creative ways to engage and make an impact on them. Thoughtful answers and advice make you memorable, just like a brand. Learn to express yourself with clarity and confidence, let passion drive your conversations, and use your experience to add weight to whatever you say.
Have an impressive resume
A senior executive’s resume is more than a document that offers information on your educational and professional background, skills, capabilities, and experience. It is a branding tool you can use to make an impact on potential employers. A good one is an asset because it can drive hiring decisions even before recruiters meet you. Getting your resume written by professional writers is an excellent idea. A professional can help you pick the right information and compellingly express things. They even design your resume keeping readability and aesthetics in mind. So you have a resume that consolidates your growth potential with future job opportunities.
Think beyond yourself
Even as you showcase the best you have with verbal communication and a powerful resume, branding is not all about you. It requires you to focus on the relationships you build with your clients, colleagues, and team over the years. These are the people who validate the achievements and qualities you highlight in your speeches and resume. Strengthening relationships is easier said than done because winning trust and respect can take years. You need to go the extra mile to retain them as well. Helping others and making a positive influence helps you reach the goal of building and retaining trust and respect in your community over the years.
Reaching a top role shouldn’t be the end of the road because there is always a scope for improvement, no matter how much experience and expertise you gain. Upskilling yourself takes you a step ahead with your branding initiative as it gives you something more to add to your resume. The best approach is to invest in annual skill set building as it keeps you consistent and on track with personal growth and development. While you can participate in the training programs of the existing employer, it makes sense to take up courses on your own. Fortunately, you can find several free and affordable executive skill development programs online to enhance your skills without spending a fortune.
Ask for feedback
Reaching a top role requires years of hard work and dedication, but it doesn’t mean you should rest on your laurels. It is easy to believe that you have done it all, but this attitude can do more harm than good to a personal branding strategy. Be open to feedback, rather ask for it and emphasize getting the whole truth. The idea is to understand your shortcomings so that you can work on them and improve. Getting feedback and working on self-improvement go a long way in strengthening your brand because it shows the intention to get better. Ask a co-worker, friend, or client to share their perspective on your skills and be willing to take genuine feedback in a stride.
Building your personal brand as a business leader requires hard work and creative thinking, and you can do a decent job if you follow these steps. Since you are in a top profile, it makes sense to invest additional effort. You can consult with an expert career coach to make the journey easier and quicker. It is an excellent investment you can make for your professional career as a senior executive, so do it without thinking twice.