With the start of British Summer Time, gardens springing into bloom and an election finally called, everything seems to be in transition. So this is the perfect time to reflect upon yourself and your aspirations, giving you an opportunity to reinvent yourself without losing your core values and beliefs and preparing yourself for your future.
An example of this is my work with a leading career transition consultancy. By designing programmes to help people to develop a Personal Brand that embraces their accomplishments, talents, values and beliefs, I uncover what makes them stand out from the crowd, particularly important in this challenging job market.
Two elements of a Personal Brand are to be ‘current’ and ‘authentic’. What do I mean by current? One example is not being trendy from a fashion sense but, from a visual perspective, by purchasing a current piece for your business attire, showing that you understand what is happening out there and that you are forward thinking and not living in the past. Or it could be ensuring that your use of technology is up to date, for example by writing a blog, tweeting or networking through appropriate social media sites, although as a certain candidate has found in the run up to the election, tweeting inappropriate comments can create a less than favourable impact!
Authenticity is something that people ask me about particularly when preparing for interviews. What does that mean for them? When I googled the definition, it said ‘genuine, trustworthy, reliable’ and ‘of undisputed origin’. Damaging your authenticity is best demonstrated by the stories we have read over the past few months relating to MP’s expenses where people, by their actions, have had their authenticity and reputations tainted. And as we know, once lost, this can be difficult to regain.
An example on a personal level is your CV, which needs to be representative of your skills, strengths, achievements and experience. Authenticity means presenting yourself honestly and not being tempted to embellish, which can immediately impact on your trustworthiness and reliability; if this is questionable, what else is? Your brand and authenticity tarnished!
So take this opportunity to think about your ‘new beginnings’ and how your brand reflects what you are moving towards; a new career, new business relationships or a new you, confident that you are ready to embrace all opportunities that come your way.