- Testimonials/Case Studies
All Posts Tagged Tag: ‘branding’
I was working with a client who was fed up. He was so frustrated with why his brand was not consistent. Well, rather he was upset with why his personal brand was not consistently generating more business for him. When I asked him what he wanted his personal brand to “say” about him, he went off on a tangent that ultimately led to his confession. He wanted MORE RESPECT from others. Very honest of him, and interesting.
Well, who the heck wouldn’t want to be respected? What respect signals is that we all want to ultimately be wanted and loved by others. That’s fair and a good goal. However, we can’t force people to respect us and thus, love us. It just doesn’t work that way. It took my client a long time to “get” this notion. I mean, we all “get” it, but to really “own” the concept is another thing.
As Lynne Twist says in one of my all-time favorite books, “The Soul of Money”, the concept of sufficiency means that we believe that there is enough for everyone to have “some” and that no one has to go without. There is plenty of abundance available for us all. We just need to focus on what we have instead of what we don’t have. In this way, what we have (and thus want more of) grows.
So what does this have to do with you getting more respect? Well, you can’t force others to respect you. You can’t force them to love you. You can’t get respect by feeling inadequate and entitled to it. That’s a nasty personal brand. It doesn’t work in business or in personal lives.
The only way to get respect is to first GIVE and expect nothing back in return. I know that notion may be cliche’ sadly. However, it is the only way your personal brand (and business/career) thrives.
So stop and think about the last time you did something for someone just because it was the kind thing to do. Where you expected absolutely nothing in return, but got a ton back in return. The positive stuff you get back (business, clients, referrals, money, love) doesn’t even have to show up from the original recipient of your good deeds. It just shows up because you had a strong personal brand and you gave. You just have to accept it and be grateful.
Now go out there and generate a fantastic personal brand by just giving.
So my husband and I LOVE Chipotle. I mean really love it. We are not burrito people, but we love their burrito bowls. We find it healthy and fast and I actually find the brand very fun and on point. I was very sad when they partnered with McDonald’s for a short bit. Then they came back to their senses.
Here’s my issue: every time I go to Chipotle, it is like pulling teeth to get the folks behind the counter to give me more than 4 shreds of lettuce in my burrito bowl. It is so bad that last time I was in there I literally put my hands to my head and said to them, “Oh my goodness. What am I mis-communicating here to you?” It was meant to be a sad “throw my hands up in the air” question. Funny thing was, they just stared at me with this look like, “we’ve been taught to conserve how much we put into your burrito bowl”.
Now I run a business. So I really get precious resources and inventory. Chipotle can’t be scooping out all the meat, toppings and lettuce that people want. If they did, they would be out of business and we’d all be extra fat and stuffed.
However, as much as I love Chipotle I find myself dreading going up to the counter and begging for a few more shreds of lettuce. I mean it is lettuce and it is not an overly expensive topping- especially in California where produce is cheap.
So if I love Chipotle this much and I dread going, what does this say for someone who goes in for the first time and runs into my issue in any way, shape or form? To me it says that the Chipotle brand is suffering. All it takes is training your staff better on the execution fine points of servicing customers: give them enough to keep them happy and our personal and business brand healthy, but don’t give them so much that you break the bank and get fired.
What does this mean for you? Next time you are providing any type of customer or client service stop and think:
- Am I skimping on the lettuce and leaving the client/customer frustrated, with a poor personal brand perception of me and my business
-Am I giving with the mentality of abundance and wanting to be ‘of service’ balanced with the need to run an effective and efficient business, thus a powerful and balanced personal and business brand?
I’ve been thinking a lot about the word, “self” and in particular, how people perceive themselves and others in relation to the word, “selfish”. All of this inquiry leads to the conclusion that people with a strong sense of self have strong personal brands. By a strong sense of self, I am referring to being able to love themselves, express their authentic selves and bring this notion to their work and careers with ease and grace. This equals one fantastic personal brand.
Often when people call us “selfish” it is because they can’t value the healthy boundaries we’ve established. Likely, they also don’t have good boundaries themselves. That’s why saying “no” or establishing any other type of boundary with them makes them feel unloved and rejected and thus, they call us selfish.
In fact, it is just the opposite. In her book, “The Gifts of Imperfection”, Berne Brown points out that in order to have compassion, we must be able to have good boundaries. Otherwise, we are not genuine because we feel resentful of not being able to say “no” or hold our boundary. Then we feel taken advantage of and “unloved”
If you can’t be compassionate towards yourself enough to set boundaries, then you can’t be compassionate towards others.
Now that’s selfish, if you ask me.
For many people, the holidays are a stressful time in business and in their personal lives. It seems that no amount of “good cheer” and commercialized joy can make it better. The result is always a mis-aligned and ineffective personal brand.
If you look around, the products industry has figured out how to sell us “joy”- which is the only emotion that matters in order to get people to be attracted, and buy, from a business. For instance, Starbuck’s 2013 Holiday campaign is….Share Joy! Norwegian Cruise Lines has a Holiday Joy campaign, too. And of course, QVC invites us all to give joy this holiday season.
Do you get the picture? While you don’t have to go out spending lots of money to find your joy (you decide if that concept even really works for you), you can decide where to spend your money. Where you spend your money is an easy way to have your money count in ways that bring you profound joy. For instance, do you support fair trade or an organization that does great things for the community with your donation? For me this year, I have chosen to make all my holiday purchases at stores or charities that are either fair trade or directly support a cause or a group with which I am proud to be associated. Consider your money can serve as your voice and be used as a beautiful means to express your desire to see positive change/events happen in the world and your community.
Where exactly is your joy campaign as a service provider or professional? Most importantly, can you take that joy and have it last for eleven more months, or is it just relegated to December? While December is a good start, let’s see if you can make your joy, and thus your personal brand value, last longer!
Do you know the difference between showing your passion to the world versus just being emotional and perhaps, irrational? It’s a concept we don’t stop and think about often, especially with respect to personal brand management. We speak so much about making sure your work product is firmly grounded in your passion and purpose, we leave out HOW best to EXPRESS this passion you have.
This very concept came up for me last week. I was working with a client on how to prepare her best for negotiating a bigger chunk of the ownership of a company she currently co-owns with 2 other people. The snag is that the other two owners are men. She was lamenting that it is often difficult for her to communicate her passion for their wildly successful business without getting emotional. She feared that her emotion would be mistaken for uncontrolled emotion, perhaps.
As women, we tend to process emotions and feelings very differently than our male counterparts obviously. In business, this is often misinterpreted as women being “weak”, “overly emotional” and yes, even “erratic and out of control”.
The truth is none of these poor personal brand labels have to apply. In the case of my client, they are certainly not true. In fact, my client is anything but these labels. She is very clear about her worth and her passion for the business she co-owns. Now she just wants to convey that to her partners because she feels she deserves more equity.
The most important way to make sure your emotions don’t get misinterpreted with your passion, resulting in a negative personal brand perception is to:
1) be clear about your intentions- are you passionate about your work?
2) know how does your passion show up in your personal brand?
3) make sure you communicate your passion with emotion, but not with such overpowering emotion that you look out of control as a personal brand.