Writing the bio for your brand can be more difficult than you would expect.
This is especially true if you’ve never focused on highlighting your strengths and achievements when creating your brand. You have to be comfortable having the spotlight on yourself, you must have confidence in a openly sharing your “personal brag”, and most importantly, you need to know what you stand for.
Afterall, if you have not yet defined what your brand is, you’ll most likely hit a stumbling block (or a wall) when you put pen to paper…or digits to keys.
Entrepreneur Magazine hit the nail on the head when outlining “8 Reasons a Powerful Personal Brand Will Make You Successful”. Point 8 of the article states:
Confidence: Developing your personal brand requires you to find your authentic voice. The process of creating one develops who you are — the unique you — the Me, Inc. When you find your voice, and your audiences start to react positively, that builds self-confidence and self-esteem and allows you to find yourself in a meaningful way.
I found this to be true, and to be quite honest, it came as a surprise, when I asked the top leaders of my team to submit their bios to me. Crickets.
I was giving these top leaders an opportunity to be promoted on my fan page and on my personal Facebook profile with over 70K followers and on all my social sites. I was one of the top of the company and by promoting them, they’d get a ton of exposure. When I reached out to inquire what the delay in getting their bios was, I learned they never had written about themselves. It was an eye opener and made perfect sense.
The difference between an entrepreneur and someone who has been working for a company/institution is personal branding. The entrepreneur has been defining and dissecting who they are, what they stand for, what their products represent, what the benefits of working with them are, etc. They have written and thrown away more versions of their bio and their mission statement and values statement, than anyone else. They’ve brainstormed key words over and over, have filled notebooks full of ideas, chicken scratch, and stick-figure pictures of every element that defines them.
That’s what your brand does. It points the magnifying glass right back at self. I have never once heard that being an entrepreneur is easy. Introspection is challenging. The reward of getting to a point where you’re finally, somewhat, satisfied with your final product / statement / meaning is gratifying.
For example, if you scroll through Linkedin or Twitter and read the statements or bios of what many promote, you’ll see they’re promoting the company they work for. Their identity has been absorbed into what the company stands for, what the company’s mission is. They speak in “we” – the individual voice is not present. The individual belief system is muted. They are a representative of their company and respectfully and dutifully they speak on behalf of what they company brand represents.
It’s a strong company vision and culture that can create an army of advocates. Good for them.
The stumbling block comes to individuals who have just begun their journey over the bridge from “corporate worker bee” to entrepreneur when identifying their brand.
And what an exciting journey it is.
In a previous blog post, “Foundational Entrepreneurial Elements of Building Your Brand”, I outline how to dissect and develop a personal timeline to assist in jogging your memory. This practice helps individuals recall certain milestones, even failures, which stand out in their life as turning points and as features of personal development.
Sometimes it’s the triumphs that make us believe in ourselves more, that help us gain greater clarity of purpose and sometimes it’s the destruction of what we believed in that propels us into a new direction. A direction more aligned with our purpose.
Developing our timeline as a base clears the clutter of the past and helps us move toward a greater understanding of your brand.
The previous post also recommends a wide selection of personality assessments. These tests will help you develop an objective perspective when developing your brand in writing.
Take the time to build the foundation of your brand – it’s worth the time and will allow for greater clarity when others are looking for a leader to follow.