How To Craft Your Professional Brand


 

If you work in business long enough, you earn yourself a reputation. But cultivating a brand, something entirely different and valuable, takes intentional work.

“If you’re not intentional about crafting a brand, you’ll only be known by your reputation,” said Senior Vice President of Avnet Human Relations Terry Bassett.

Bassett said a brand is “everything you are, and it’s what you own when you walk out the door.” A brand encompasses skills and talents, but also your belief systems. “It’s really who you are.”

Bassett laid out four core steps to crafting your brand. The first is deep self-reflection about talents and passions. Secondly, build a vision about what your future life could look like. “Imagine the power if you could take everything that’s good about you, and design your life using all of those components,” said Bassett. Next, be realistic about what your limitations might be. Finally, surround yourself with like people who share your brand passion.

Brand-building is just as important for employers looking to maintain a high level of talent. Bassett said differentiating yourself as an employer means seeing workers as whole people. Employees want respect for having broader life interests outside the office. It also means finding a real work-life balance for employees, depending on the culture you want to have.

PUBLISHED JUNE 19, 2014