After spending nearly 20 years of my life in marketing and advertising, I truly believe in the power of branding. I’ve seen what it can do to connect with human emotion and the way that it can be used to create a consistent and compelling experience. I’ve seen the power of branding to create loyalty and advocacy and to change the way that we shop, the way we make decisions and the way we inherently behave.
I’ve also dedicated almost the same amount of time in my life to understanding the dynamics of leadership. The power that it holds to influence and inspire others. The ability that it has to change a culture, impact business and ultimately impact people’s lives.
Branding is powerful when it is consistent – and so is leadership. Bringing these ideas together is not only powerful, but it’s a game-changing approach that everyone should be adopting.
By analyzing what leadership means to you and what’s most important to you, by understanding what kind of leader you really want to be, you are able to create a consistent vision for how you want to show up – aka your leadership brand. That brand vision will support your efforts in your professional development and advancement – and more importantly, will simplify your approach. By focusing on your leadership brand and aligning to your core values, you are able to harness your true, authentic self and reduce your overall energy on a daily basis. You are then only faced with the task of bringing that brand to life and not with questioning your approach, what way you should be showing up, or your confidence when you do.
So, how do you create your leadership brand?
Below you will find a few simple steps on how to develop a vision for the leadership brand you want to own. Being intentional is the biggest part of this equation so if you need a little help in analyzing or narrowing your focus down, we are here to help.
Step 1: Make a list of keywords to describe your leadership based on any of the following questions:
What does good leadership look like to you and how are you exemplifying that today?
What are your strengths and gifts? Or key personality traits?
What is your unique point of differentiation?
What legacy do you want to leave behind (i.e. what would you want others to say about you when you’re not there)?
What do you want to stand for as a leader that you aren’t embracing today (aspirational)?
Step 2: Narrow that list down to up to 6 keywords.
Step 3: Combine those keywords into 2-3 word phrases to describe what you want to be known for.
Step 4: Write it out into a mantra or vision (a possible approach could be: I am a ________________ leader so that I can deliver ________________)
Step 5: Create an action plan to live it – what’s the very first step?
Having a clear understanding of who you are and what you want to be is powerful. Are you ready to create your leadership brand?