Personal Branding Across Cultures Blogathon: Day 8 / Paolo Feroleto
Over the last few years the UK has seen a steady rise of interest in the subject of personal branding. Whereas it was once deemed ‘too American’ for the reserved Brit mentality, understanding it’s not all about self-promotion has led many people to take notice of the benefits of working on their personal brand.
There is real evidence showing areas such as leadership, recruitment and coaching having embraced personal branding. Graduates and job seekers are being encouraged to ensure their CV contains all the attributes of a compelling personal brand. Recruitment agencies are helping them identify the value they can bring to an organisation, and also match-make with companies pairing them up to make use their talents, interests and values.
The Different Faces of Personal Branding
Those wanting to develop their leadership skills understand the importance of developing a strong personal brand over time and remain flexible to the changes this can bring. A strong personal leadership brand allows all the true qualities of a leader to become known to their colleagues; this takes focus and patience.
I have been working with several groups of youngsters through enterprise academies and young leadership foundations, with the sole intention of helping them discover their own personal brand. This has led to many interesting results and feedback from organisations requiring more development work. There are certainly lots of positives to take from this and I feel the next generation are well placed to take on board the importance of personal branding as their careers develop.
I believe the media too has played a large part in bringing personal branding to a wider audience. The exposure (often, over exposure) of ‘celebrities’ gives PR companies the opportunity to exercise a certain control of their clients’ personal brand and market it to great effect. A perfect example being David Beckham, who is fully aware of his brand value, something that has been expertly developed by his own management and PR companies.
The rise of social media platforms, particularly Twitter, have given users a platform for their ‘brand’s voice’ which some use more effectively than others. Yet I feel that certain personalities are using the opportunity to the detriment of their brand, without a real strategy, focusing more on instant gratification rather than developing a long-term considered approach.
Whilst working with some clients on their company brand, I have been asked many times about my personal branding work and it has led to many interesting collaborations for me. There is definitely a greater awareness of the subject and an interest of how it can help individuals develop. Network events are also a great place to observe how people are putting their personal brand into practice through their considered body language and interaction with others.
I have also noticed an increase in referrals to colleagues who are style consultants, many of whom work with clients on their dress sense, exploring colours and styles that best suit them, thus creating another visual element of their personal brand. All of these elements are becoming more common in an increasingly competitive employment market.
Whilst I feel there is still a lot of work to be done to make personal branding less exclusive, I believe personal branding is slowly finding it’s rightful place here in the UK.