Change is an inevitable part of life and I hope that any negative impacts of the pandemic are behind you, and you can continue to work and play with a lot more freedom. With that newly found freedom and the after effects of isolation and lack of communication with others, I think human connection will become even more important.
For most of us going to work or running our own business, it is not just about the income – it is about friendships, connections, conversations, making a contribution and being of service to others. Making a life not just a living – work/life blend.
I met colleague and friend, Michelle Pascoe many years ago through a networking group and she invited me to speak at a businesswomen’s group that she was President of. We’ve kept in touch and some years ago, Michelle asked me to again be a speaker for a professional development day she had organised for the club industry.
On that day I met a potential client, kept in contact, and thanks to Michelle and those opportunities, I ran professional development training on how to communicate a 5-star brand for the team at The Epping Club in Sydney.
You never know when opportunity will knock on the door but if you are consistent with personal branding and communication activity such as networking, public speaking, client connections and social media, great things might happen.
Here are five ideas to help you take a refreshed look at your personal brand to create your own opportunities.
Communication. This turning point we’re experiencing is an opportunity to build your brand. Now is a great time to spread the message of the new and invigorated you and create awareness of what services you offer.
I saw Gary Vaynerchuk the well-known personal brand and marketing expert on stage a few years ago and he said, “You don’t have to constantly create content – curate. By that he means talk to your audience constantly about who you are, what you are doing, give tips, share ideas, share photos and videos and provide an authentic insight into you and your brand.”
“You must work every day to captivate and stay relevant to customers to grow your audience,” he adds.
Conversation. To connect even further we need to consider two-way communication. Not just content and doing our work but conversation. Which includes listening as well as talking. I often say, “Coffee conversations lead to great connections.”
Now that we are back meeting up for coffee or drinks and reconnecting – remember the hospitality and retail people who have had it very tough for a while. That person serving us behind the counter at our local café or shop is not just a salesperson but also someone who is helping us and a real person.
Likewise, the ones we are serving and helping are people too and want to be listened to.
Collate. Before you move forward you need to gather intelligence, i.e. data and research from current and former clients and even competitors. Can you set up conversations or do an online survey with your clients and any stakeholders such as suppliers and industry personnel to find out what is working and what is not currently right now. What are they needing right now? Where are their pain points? Analyse your business and see where most work or leads comes from – what are they requesting and what social media is resonating?
Creativity. Once you know what problems exist either in their business or your own, you need to innovate to solve that problem. Tapping into your creativity is one way to find solutions. Perhaps it may simply be a new way of saying what you do or reframing what you do to make it sound more exciting or relevant.
A fabulous book I read many years ago, The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron looks at many ways to explore and unearth your own creativity.
Celebrate. Most of us by now have accepted change and adapted to it. Maybe even putting on a “happy face” to improve our state of mind. Remember to take time to acknowledge your wins, however big or small and realize that to keep moving forward it is not always about doing something new or improving what you have always done, it’s about looking at and doing things differently to what you’ve done before.
Learn more about Coaching and Consulting to enhance your personal brand.
Sue Currie is a speaker and the author of IMPRESSario, Present and Promote the Star Within You. She is passionate about helping business executives and entrepreneurial professionals elevate their personal brand, image and professional presence. Sue’s suite of services delivered through workshops, consulting, coaching and keynote presentations provides a multi-faceted approach to gain high transformation for her clients.