Investing in ‘BRAND-YOU’ during these crazy times
Post by Prasad Narasimhan, Managing Partner based in Bangalore, and Head of Customer Experience
Coronavirus has brought entire societies and economies to a grinding halt. The risk for professional people is to stare into the uncertainty like a deer caught in the glare of headlights.
The crisis had forced a rapid and radical re-think of work itself, and most of us have quickly adapted: working-from-home, video conferencing and a range of other smart options have been quickly adopted. But is it a timely reminder to also re-think our personal priorities?
Our triangle of relationships
We all simultaneously manage three sides to our relationships – work, family & self. Indeed, our lives are a balance of how well we juggle these.
Most of us define ourselves by our work, predominantly using our success here to even guide our self-worth. Many of us have also invested in our families, sporadically or otherwise, as a ‘counterbalance’ to our focus on work. But most of us have not systematically invested in the third – our relationship with ourselves. This creates an imbalance, away from the ideal.
Now might be a great time to rethink this balance. To use this lull to invest in everything that we cherish in ourselves. Our talents, our learning, our health, our ideas – in short, renovating our own brand.
We could draw inspiration from the world of brands to figure out how we might do this.
1. Seek fresh insight: Now is a great time to introspect on what makes us unique. Ask our partner, our kids, our friends, whoever … with the intent of discovering something fresh about ourselves that we may have been unaware of, ignored, or even taken for granted.
2. Find personal purpose: Most brands today are in search of purpose. As professionals, we too need to find personal purpose to act as a bellwether as we navigate these new waters. At our partners’ retreat in January, we tried this on ourselves, with very gratifying results as we posted on here.
3. Define your brand idea: Linked with our purpose (“why” brand-you exists), it’s also good to articulate what we’d like people to think of us (“what” makes us unique). What would you like to be famous for? Not just what makes our brand sharper and more distinctive, but also what makes it more valuable.
4. Act on your brand: Set out a daily action agenda to drive this new brand. Blogging is a great way to get going, to find fluency in our thoughts. We must reconnect with those people we’d like to experience us differently. Create new conversations. Invite new discussions. Set a platform for new relationships, not limited to our work priorities.
Beyond initial changes, the challenge is to translate your revamped personal brand into winning habits, with tips on how to do this in a classic brandgym blog post here.
5. Reboot Learning: Finally, this is a great time to reskill. To join a new online class that we’ve always wanted to. To widen our learning interests, away from the rut we may have earlier gotten ourselves into.
Building Brand-You is not about creating new self-image (what others might think of us) or even enhancing self-belief (how we might think of ourselves). Instead, it is about Self-Compassion: caring enough to nurture ourselves for a new world ahead. Loving ourselves enough to invest in what we can become.