…through social media.
Each of us, as individuals, has a personal brand, which is shaped by our collection of professional experiences (resume/CV), our passions and interests, and our cultural background. It dictates, to a large extent, our career paths, our professional and social encounters, and our future opportunities. Should we then not take the same pro-active approach to developing, shaping and managing our personal brands as we do those of the corporations we work for?
Dan Schwabel has a great post on his personal branding blog, outlining his personal branding predictions for 2010. In it he details a number of trends that are culminating in the increased importance of personal branding in 2010, but I would like to focus on two specific ones:
1) Your voice becomes stronger than your resume
2) Social Media is being used more for career development
As Google, Yahoo and Bing begin to value social media activity more and more in serving search results, it’s no wonder that social media mediums such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc are going to continue to be elevated more and more to the forefront of your personal brand… when was the last time you did a vanity search on Google?
Which brings me to my point: if you are not pro-actively managing and shaping yourself as a brand online, your personal brand will be relegated to a kelp-like amorphous blob being pushed and pulled by the relentless current of your digital footprint.
However, if you become the architect of your brand online, your voice will become your resume, you will find your career to be more rewarding (by attracting employers interested in you for your passions, not just the bullet points on your resume), and you will earn a hell of a lot more money.
Right now, each of us has an amazing opportunity to shape the structures, connections and flows of information around our personal brands: we can architect the rivers of influence that flow into (and shape) those brands, while molding ourselves into the professionals we dream of becoming … are you taking advantage of one of the most important opportunities of your lifetime?
I am. It’s one of my main reasons for starting this blog: to begin to evolve and shape my own personal brand.