Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Being My Own CEO and Building My Brand

How do you define brand? A couple of months ago I would have given you a list of products and organizations that reflect a distinct brand in the marketplace.  Today my answer is different. I am my own brand. When I was acting in and/or producing video, film, and theatre projects I was more inclined to think of myself as a brand because I was either pitching a story or auditioning for a part. I needed to sell my skills and ideas. Now that I'm in a transitional employment stage I've been reminded that my individual brand identity and how I promote myself is just as important  today as when I was  acting.

I've been working with a career consultant and have been reading a lot of articles related to the job search process, career development, and resume writing. There has been common threads through all of my research and reading. They include defining goals, focusing on core strengths you bring to your work, and highlighing when and where you've added value to an organization or company. These tactics were reiniforced this weekend as I read Sunday's Hartford Courant Career Builder section. The cover story written by Emily Hughley Quinn was entitled Build A Brand. Even if you're not looking for a job it's worth reading.

Today I came across another positive take away about brand when I read, Revisiting the Chick-fil-A and Chapstick Incidents: The Ethics of Transparency and Authenticity in Social Media. According to Ric Dragon, CEO of Dragon Search Marketing and author of The Dragon Search Online Marketing Manual and Social Marketology, "With the rise of social media, brands have the opportunity to assume that role of an individual with a brand voice and personality, and have one-on-one conversations." Idividuals are also branding themselves and their skills by tapping into social media. Those who are successful at their personal branding have a leg up against their competition. When I was a kid, my mom told me, "That if I don't think much of myself, no one else will." My mama didn't know it then, but she was helping me to recognize and build my brand.

I have also come to realize that confidence is important, but an employer wants to see more than confidence when he/she brings you in for an interview. The interviewer wants you to demonstate how your current professional strengths will be an asset to their organization or company. One must be able to articulate the value he/she brings to a position.

I recently took the Birkman examination, a  personality assessment and a series of related report sets that facilitate team building, career counseling and interpersonal conflict resolution.  It helps to assess an individual's work style, interest, and strengths. I learned that my leadership style is that of a delagator. That is one thing I want to change.  I need to be my own CEO that recognizes my value, knows my strengths, as well as my weaknesses.

Initially, I wasn't excited about having to look for a new job, but as I think about my brand, the job search process presents me with an opportunity to self-assess and think about what I want the next chapter of my life to read.  My brand and how I promote it is up to me.


RicDragon said...

Hi Aaliyah, thanks so much for the mention - and great to hear you enjoyed the post about brand and ethics in social media. Great discussion.

RicDragon said...

Hi Aaliyah, thanks so much for the mention - and great to hear you enjoyed the post about brand and ethics in social media. Great discussion.

dirtywater22 said...


Thanks for commenting and the Twitter shout out! Loved your article!!