The first and most important plank of building a ‘Fearless Brand’ is to be authentic. This is true for any brand – your company, goods and/or services – but especially true for your personal brand. Your personal brand is ‘in play’ and being messaged every second of every day. I’m often asked “How can I be authentic when ______?” That blank is filled in with any number of concerns but the things I hear most are in regard to something negative.
What is mentioned most by clients and connections are their short comings…real or perceived. It’s important to remember that we’ve all reached our highest rank on this earth – and that is human. We all have short comings, ‘defects’ and deficits. But we all have tremendous gifts to share. Embrace your entire self. Work on what needs to be addressed and accept the rest – it’s what makes you YOU.
Here are five considerations which will allow you to be the most authentic ‘you’ possible…
Don’t turn your back on your past
You can regret your past mistakes or you can embrace them for the lessons that they’ve provided. Learn from them rather than obsess with what might have been. Without them you wouldn’t be where you are now with endless opportunity.
Embrace your strengths
True humility – by my definition – is accepting all of our negatives AND our positives – exactly as they are. It is not uncommon to discount our own talents, skills, experience and knowledge. The key is to be realistic in assessing – and embracing – our strengths. Make certain that you don’t inflate – nor diminish – your strengths.
To be truly authentic, we must be open to learning and changing – evolving if you will. One of the most effective ways to do that is to obtain fresh, honest and positive input from someone other than ourselves. Every successful athlete has a coach. Every successful business person has one or more trusted advisers. This is not to say that you must follow all of the advice or believe all of the assessment(s). Remaining teachable merely means to remain open to new and different perspective.
If you know me, you’ve heard me say “Manage your own brand – or someone else will.” To be authentic we must be proactive – taking the steps necessary to remain true to ourselves, accepting what we can’t affect and taking the necessary actions to learn and grow.
Know your WHY
Clarity is power. Having a clear vision of who we are, where we want to go and do is essential to authenticity. We must know our ‘why’ – our motivation, inspiration and yes, passion. One of the best explanations of the importance of ‘WHY’ is a TEDx talk given by Simon Sinek titled “How Great Leaders Inspire Action”. In it, he details the Golden Circle of Why. I encourage you to invest the approximately twenty minutes it takes to watch. It will be worth your time.
Having read this far you shouldn’t be surprised when you read this – What’s the simple answer to having an authentic and ‘Fearless’ brand? Simple. BE AUTHENTIC. Being authentic is indeed the key to a fearless personal brand.The five factors I’ve listed are all key to achieving that goal. What do you do to make certain that your brand is authentic? Leave a comment – but keep it ‘real ‘ 🙂