A water-tight career strategy for your personal brand is your most important asset. Having one will:
Guide your decision making
Lead you closer to fulfilment
Create more purpose in your work
It also puts the power back in your hands. You can write blogs, speak at talks, read books – these are all activities well within your power. With so much choice, how you spend your time has never been more important.
Spending time working out what area you want to master is time well spent. Very well spent.
In The 22 Immutable Laws Of Marketing – Al Ries and Jack Trout identify:
You “burn” your way into the mind by narrowing the focus to a single word or concept. It’s the ultimate marketing sacrifice. Federal Express was able to put the word overnight into the minds of its prospects because it sacrificed its product line and focused on overnight package delivery only.
This applies to both businesses and personal brands.
Brands become confusing when they try to be too much to too many people. This might create short-term success, but the cost to the brand costs more in the long term. Leaving onlookers wondering what the business actually does.
Skills that don’t align with your strategy are synonymous with product line extension. They erode your most valuable career capital: your brand.
A LinkedIn page stuffed with keywords leads nowhere good. Be everything to someone, not something to everyone. All this leads to is vanity metrics. The profile gets more views, but are they the right views?
When assessing new opportunities we should be considering:
What problem do I solve, what is my mastery? Does acquiring this skill build on this mastery or erode it?
Learning a new skill should strengthen your brand and the value that you bring. Knowing many frameworks (in a shallow fashion) risks negative long-term value degradation.
Committing to mastery and staying on brand might seem boring. Yet, in the long-term, it could be one of the best decisions you make.
What is your strategy for ensuring your career decisions are on track?