“Successful rebranding doesn’t involve inventing a new persona —it’s a shift in emphasis that should prompt others to say, ‘I can see you doing that.’”, HBR 2011
In my last post, I discussed the importance of branding, and how to create your own personal brand. It’s also important to re-evaluate your identity, ensuring that your brand matches not only where you are, but also where you are headed.
Here are a few situations when you should refresh your brand:
- New job: Reflect on your prior experience and determine what has evolved to match your desired career.
- Relevance: Make sure the skills you are promoting are still valued today, and add new ones that are related to your profession.
- Clarity: Incorporate your desires, passions and goals in your descriptions and introductions.
- Perception vs. reality: When others view you as a “the way you used to be” and you see yourself differently, it’s time to start telling a different story.
If any of these ring true, here are a few steps to start the process of rebranding:
- Evaluate: Start by listing what you’re proud of and which skills you don’t want to focus on for your next position.
- Leverage: Think about how you describe yourself when meeting someone new and how others introduce you. Then blend both concepts into one.
- Build: Determine how to remain current through on-the-job or online training classes or professional affiliation sessions to broaden your skill set.
- Develop: “… To protect your personal brand, you need to develop a coherent narrative that explains exactly how your past fits into your present.”1
- Promote: Find opportunities to test out your story. See if you get the response you desire and continue to evolve the message until it lands as intended.
In the past, I’ve discussed other ways to use storytelling effectively in leadership, and rebranding is another great opportunities. Use professional and personal opportunities to test out the “new you” and get feedback from people you trust. This is a necessary process to support future growth.
I’m curious to hear about times when you rebranded yourself successfully? What tips would you share with others?