The SydneyStandard - a community newspaper published for the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney- November Issue 2016

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Have you thought about the impact of your personal brand?

Our success, either as a small business owner or as an executive in a corporate environment, in today's digital communications and the multi- dimensional landscape is based more often than not, on how we are perceived.

Studies undertaken by Harvard University, Carnegie Foundation and the Stanford Research Institute, confirm that 85% of our success is based on interpersonal skills and 15% on technical capabilities and expertise.

Building and defining our personal brand is the first step in acknowledging where we can step up and be known for our unique qualities. These qualities are the key to unlocking our business and career potential. The expertise, products and services we offer are only of value, if we distinguish ourselves from the “pack”.

We see everyday examples of businesses and individuals gaining an edge through developing and reflecting a strong alignment between their business and personal brands.

For many individuals and business owners focusing on developing a “personal brand” is either overlooked or not fully understood and assumed as not necessary.

No matter what stage we are at in managing either a business or developing our careers, if we are serious about advancing, we must start giving serious thought about how we represent ourselves.

As an example, consider those first few seconds when either meeting someone, presenting, hosting a meeting or doing a business deal over a dinner or a coffee catch up. What impressions do we leave and how do we make people feel? What was the emotional connection we made?

We must consider how we rate the management of our personal brand.

What is our image, presentation and communication style reveal across digital channels and in face-to-face conversations? How do we use body language, voice tone and do we have the ability to put people at ease in social and business settings. These matter and display who you are, your sense of ethics, manners, etiquette and protocol intelligence.

By building confidence, presence and professionalism through defining our personal brand success will naturally follow.

A personal brand is unique and individual. It does not stand still and evolves with time and experience, but the time taken to learn about and develop our personal brands is very important in today’s competitive market place.

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