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5 Powerful Tricks for Personal Branding right now

October 12, 2020

 

Personal Branding can be easy

Personal Branding more than a Buzz word

Do you remember your First Job interview? Remember your first Resume. How did it feel writing it? What did you put in your First Resume? It must have been quite a moment to scratch your head.  For some of us, it must have been quite easy.

When I look back I see it was the presence of soft and hard testimonials to show for. These testimonials in the form of Co-curricular and extracurricular achievements made its way into the Resume. It made some standout from the rest.

The question is what is Personal Branding and how is it relevant to us. Most of us may be experienced professionals with a good amount of work or expertise to show for. Why do we need to brand ourselves?

So let us delve into the Primary question, so let us try to understand Personal Branding. I would simply say Personal Branding is applying Branding concepts to oneself. But let us look at a more comprehensive explanation.


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According to Personalbrand.com, Personal Branding can be said to be "Personal branding is the conscious and intentional effort to create and influence public perception of an individual by positioning them as an authority in their industry, elevating their credibility, and differentiating themselves from the competition, to ultimately advance their career, increase their circle of influence, and have a larger impact.".

So Personal Branding can be said to portray an authentic image of your personality, strengths and competencies in a way that shows how you are better than the competition.

Impact on Work and Life

So the next question is do we all want to brand ourselves, of course, it depends on the goals you are seeking. At the least one would want to be recognised for the good work and be rewarded for the good performance.

If we misunderstand Branding to be an activity of Chest thumping we get branding wrong. We can be positioning ourselves as Personal brands for various reasons, but we must not reduce it to only what our perceptions say it is. 

It would be like thinking Sales is about Hoodwinking people...That would be outright blasphemous. So with Personal Branding, we must not think of it as portraying a false persona.

It is not, though it can be twisted to be such. 

3C Model Of Personal Branding by David Hagenbuch

To quickly start Branding yourself, I shall use the 3C Model of Personal Branding by David Hagenbuch.

The Primary 'C' is Communication. The other two C's include Competency and Character. Competency refers to how you perform at work. 

It would be pointless just promoting yourself all over if you lack this and next is Character. Character, in essence, deals with your values and qualities as an Individual. Competency and Character are complemented with Communication. Read the article here.

Simple Strategies to Get Started Quickly

1. Start Blogging

Blogging can be confused with article writing. We may think 'oh goodness, what a dim suggestion', But hear me out.

Think of it like writing an Online Diary with details every one can read. A medium of self-expression, A safe space to discuss and share information.

Yes, you could invite some Trolls. But the Pros outweigh the benefits. You could use FB comments for the comment section. I have been using it. It is really 👌.

2. Start a YouTube Channel

YouTube channel is another great medium for sharing ideas. You just need a camera and good lighting. Throw in a good microphone with less noise around where you are recording, it would be a great start.

The Best part of Vlogging is the benefit of repurposing content. The other benefit is that a good amount of people use YouTube as a source for Good information. To be entertained and learn something at the same time.

It does not need to be an elaborate video. The idea is to share a small part of you...in terms of your reactions, your struggles, ideas, views etc. You could start by having a small script and just recording what you have to say with good lights and. a sound good microphone.

3. Read a book or pick up a New Skill

Another part of Personal Branding as we have seen is Competency. I am sure a lot of us however professional we may be and well versed in our professions have something to learn.

It's a simple suggestion Read. It could be a book, an article or a white paper. Learn something that adds to your competency.

4. Create unique Content for Social Media

Creating content does not need to be only blogs or videos. One could start by engaging people with simple short posts on Facebook or Twitter.

Just forwarding content with little reactions or comments, it could also be a short and sweet way to start out.

5. Network with Like-minded People

This is another benefit to the Internet and it can really help you build a Personal Brand. Building an Audience and getting to know people.

This is where online groups and communities can be really powerful. Join a community online and engage with the content or activities in the group. Abide by the rules each community has. Try building genuine contacts.

Promote yourself appropriately as long as it is not against Community rules. Facebook and Linkedin have interesting groups to join.

Conclusion

Personal Brand is something that highlights the uniqueness in each one of us. As humans we have a lot of traits in common, to share a few, emotions like joy, struggles and talents. But in a competitive environment, we need to highlight the best we have.

I would like to thank you for sharing your time. You could download a copy of this article by clicking here.

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Strengths of Introversion in the Workplace

September 26, 2020

Understanding the Strengths of an Introvert

The Funny thing about introversion is that a lot of people can misunderstand them. Being somewhat of an introvert I found it rather funny when (some) people think that it is a bad quality to have.

Some even think it to be a kind of handicap. Let me burst that bubble right on...You are confusing Introversion with Shyness. Yes and some people can be both Shy and with introversion.

So Before we dive into the Strengths of Introversion we must understand what is Introversion?

Who is an Introvert?



I have always had a close circle of friends. But College changed a lot of things for me. My School friends went to other institutions. Public speaking situations left me confused about whether I was Shy or Introverted.

After years of trying It was a relief to overcome a Fear that can be very stifling. I believe self-expression is an awesome human quality. Having irrational fears can grip us and may keep us from making the best of various opportunities and situations. 

Getting back to the College Story, I was determined to understand myself. I took a part-time course in Psychology. I joined a local Cultural Association. I was determined to change things. After spending a year with the Cultural Association (I don't want to name). 

I was asked to present a 45 minutes talk. I prepared and prepared, I delivered the talk. It was a bad experience, but I had overcome my fear of Public speaking. I just jumped into doing what I feared the most.

That was the beginning for me, the opportunity to overcome my Shyness. I gradually understood that it was okay to introverted and that shyness was something that I had to leave behind. It was not helpful.

So how does one Define Introversion, According to Introvertdear, "The definition of an introvert is someone who prefers calm, minimally stimulating environments.". Whereas According to the American Psychological Association, "Shyness is the tendency to feel awkward, worried or tense during social encounters, especially with unfamiliar people". They are markedly very different. 

Now in the next section, I shall look at some of the Lies and Myths behind Introversion.


Some Lies & Mythbusting

I have just collected some lies and Myths around Introversion. It is not a complete list, but it is quite small, But could be longer :)

  • They don't enjoy
  • They have nothing to say
  • Aloof and proud
  • They are shy
  • They don't take risks
  • Extroverts are happier
  • Introverts get mental illnesses
  • Extroverts are much more confident
  • Introverts and Extroverts don't get along
Without getting into the Science of it (I cover it in the next section), Let's pick a couple of the obvious wrong ideas. Introverts don't enjoy themselves and are proud. This is quite presumptuous and it generalises people.

Introverts don't get along, this one sounds stupid as well. Just a bit of observation and reflection would help us understand that so many people we interact are with introversion and extroversion as well... every day. They both get along.

Now let us look a bit deeper into the science behind Introversion or Extroversion...


Introvert vs Extrovert

Introvertdear has a beautiful article on the difference in Introversion and Extraversion with respect to their brains.

But I would like to stress on some key points. Extroverts and Introverts brain react differently to Dopamine. Dopamine is a hormone and a neurotransmitter that plays an important role in motor control, motivation, arousal etc. According to Psychology Today, it is known as a feel-good neurotransmitter.

Video by ASAP Science

So Introverts are more sensitive to dopamine and may feel overstimulated to too much of it. Another point in the article is the way Introverts are more prone to overthinking. This again is due to the way the brain is wired. 

You could read the article here.

Basically, we all enjoy differently, and our experiences are different. To me, this is such a beautiful insight to see how different and unique each one of us is.


Introvert strengths in the workplace

So what are the strengths Introverts bring to the workplace? Let me bring some powerful qualities I see in Introverts.

  1. Thinkers
  2. Reflective
  3. Creative
  4. Thoughtful
  5. Good Listeners
  6. Quiet Role models

You may say there are a lot more qualities. Yes, We overlook them sometimes. These qualities are required in so many life situations and professions. Workplaces require long and thoughtful work. 

They need people-oriented as much as task-oriented people. As Professionals, we have to bring out the best in ourselves and in others. Competition is all good. But when we work together we need to be understanding and make work a good experience. At some level we all are unique but in a way quite similar as well.

If you are an introvert, you are in good company

Bill Gates
Albert Einstein
Abraham Lincoln
Warren Buffet
Michael Jordan
Meryl Streep
Eleanor Roosevelt
...Many more 

Conclusion

“Reflecting the prejudices in our culture, both introverts and extroverts chose extrovert as their ideal self and their ideal leader.” (Marti Olsen Laney, The Introvert Advantage)

I don't know if this is true. But I may be guilty of thinking Extroverted is somehow better or vice versa. Now I just think they are both humans with certain propensities and they are making the best with their life situations and dreams.

Thank you for stopping by. Do Subscribe to our Newsletter, Click hereCatch you in the Next Post.

References:


Further Reading



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How seeking Clarity can help you be more productive? 5 Anchors to keep you grounded

September 10, 2020
Seek Clarity when you are Confused

We all love achieving our goals and dreams. Whether these dreams relate to our Professional or Personal lives. There is a lot of motivation to take huge action. 

To begin with a Plan and to work on it. But one would wonder why we don't always achieve them. 

We take Massive Action, we visualise and yes most of understand that we may have to adapt and improvise along the way.

So how can we move ahead? This may be a confusing experience. It may leave us sad and anxious even.

Like all of us, I have had my share of not achieving some of my dreams. It can be painful. 

But I think we must seek in moments this very important thing. We must seek 'Clarity'. 

Some of the problems we encounter are due to changing situations. We may not be sure how to move ahead.

Clarity means getting down to the basics. It means trying to understand the reasons rather than the outcomes behind your actions.

Results matter, but good motivation and vision matter more. According to the way I see it, Clarity is understanding the relevance of what we are trying to achieve in New situations.

I have collated some anchors that can keep us grounded when times seem confusing.

5 Anchors to keep you Grounded.

During the confusing situations in my experience, the mind can react differently to different people. For me, it is interesting sometimes and sometimes it is like ...' Why God, Why!!'

But I found some practices that help and it keeps me focused...I have listed 5 of them.

What are you seeking?

Visions are not just for companies. You could have one too. 

It does not need to be professional and huge. You can keep it Tweet sized, as long as it helps remember what you want to achieve for yourself and others.

I believe include others in your vision to keep it more relevant and realistic without sacrificing the Audacious part.

This Vision is going to help you remember and focus when you lack clarity. We can use our Vision for our projects as a guiding light.

Have you decided on your Destination or Target?

If you are finding your visions to be abstract. It is not a problem, having a target could help you.

Target or we could call them goals help you chart your way to achieving your vision. 

If you do not have targets we do not know to focus on. Focus is where the magic happens.

A singular focus on Goals can be rewarding. So keeping in mind your vision, create targets.

If you are stuck or not achieving these goals, it just means you have to find better goals or strategize better.

Breaking your Goals

One of the other reason that we may not achieve something can also be that we are not organised.

Discipline helps us get more organized. We can organize our efforts by breaking our goals into actual workable plans.

Massive action needs proper planning. As someone with a background in both IT and Management, I can't stress enough the benefits of planning.

Understanding what is required to achieve our Goals can be a starting point. Getting a mentor or friend to listen to what we have planned to achieve.

Giving Flesh to your Strategy

Massive Action is only part of achieving our goals. Plans must include strategies that would help you get closer to success.

Include small tasks in your plans. This will give us something to work with. So if you are (an example) Dieting keeping a diary and recording what you eat could be a Tactic. 

Strategic Thinking can keep us be more agile and clear. Things don't go the way we plan. But we can always prepare for change.

Losing The War, Winning the Battle

 Just remember your victories and successes. You will remember the sacrifices you have taken. 

I think sometimes it is a part of achieving something worthwhile. But there are moments when we give our best and things work differently.

This can leave us confused. Should we try harder or just let it slip?

I think this is Where Clarity makes a difference. Exiting a project should be a possibility.

I know it is human nature not to give up. But sometimes it is okay to lose some battles to win the game.

There are some decisions we need to make after pondering on them or probably speaking with someone we trust. Continuing a project or leaving one should be a well thought out decision.

In Conclusion

Life and key decisions can confuse us, It is one thing to be confident. But it is quite another thing to deal with consequences. 

Gaining clarity and keeping ourselves grounded will not do away with every consequence of our decisions. But it will remind us of the point where we started this journey.

'Why' is quite a powerful question to motivate us to achieve our goals and achieve the successes we seek.

Thank you for reading this blog, I hope it got you thinking about the importance of Clarity. 

Do share this blog and like my Facebook Page. Ciao!


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The Joy of giving Positive feedback - Humanising our experience as Customers

August 27, 2020

 

Joy of Positive Feedback

Counter-Intuitive Idea that Customers have a Responsibility

What is Positive Feedback?

A Few Days back I got the whacked idea of just telling some of the service providers they were doing a great job.

Practising Assertiveness has been quite awesome, but sometimes People can mistake me for a d*ckh@3d. Lol, Sorry for using the expletives. But it clearly brings out the right feeling of how people would feel about someone being only assertive.

The important thing is that it made me feel so good to appreciate another person. Though I was paying for the service, encouraging another to serve better... I wasn't going to lose anything.

So to understand Positive Feedback, I would like to start with defining it. To each one Positive Feedback could mean something different. 

I will be using a  Management Definition of Positive Feedback. According to Better Team, It is defined as, "Positive feedback is given to employees when they meet or exceed business targets, overcome a challenge, go the extra mile, or introduce innovative ideas."

So in the context of Management, it is used to encourage employees to meet or exceed business targets or overcome challenges.

Definitions apart I think it is a great practice. If we think it through this practice is also relevant in our daily lives. We could apply this Management concept to people who provide us with a service or add value to us.

It helps encourage positive behaviour and it helps us express Gratitude that builds people. I believe this is a really transformative and personally self-building habit to have.

So now let us delve into how this could be important.

Why is positive feedback important?

I want to start by looking at the Telos for Positive Feedback. The hints of it are included all around the definition.

It is also included in our understanding of Feedback. Feedback is generally used in the context of Management to help the employee understand how they have been working. The employee gets an idea of how they are working with standards and fulfilling company objectives.

Positive feedback tells an employee they are doing a good job. This feedback is also important to a lot of Professionals that serve us every day.

They could be self-employed or local small businesses who are doing their work better than expected. 

Positive feedback is important for them too. It would help them get more passionate about their work and get healthy support. (that all of us need often)

How to give Positive Feedback...

So there are different ways to do that. A lot of it is quite simple and just requires recognising the value the other person has created for us. I am going to give some pointers on how to give feedback to anyone. 

Point Number 1: Coupling Positive Feedback with Negative Feedback

Giving Positive Feedback does not mean you don't tell them where they need improvement. It would sometimes come to our minds how the other person may receive it. But to think about it, we don't control people's reactions. The courtesy shown with intentions and love should be something that helps us understand that we are using our expression of Gratitude constructively.

Point Number 2: Using Positive Language

Positive language for feedback

Mention positive points and speak about any issues too

This could be when writing feedback or even telling the person. You could simply mention what you like about it. You could also use simple expressions like 'Well Done' or 'Fantastic' etc. If you are super impressed you could say things like "Fantastic!" or "Awesome" etc.

Point Number 3: Medium doesn't Matter, But the timing does

Timing matters too
Feedback is good

Each of us has our own way of expressing ourselves. One could write a note or drop a review online. Tell the person about what impressed you about the work he or she did directly. I think besides doing this, timing also matters. So how do we know the right time to give a business or professional feedback? When we see that it would relevant to the person. One hint could be you see that they are going the extra mile to do a good job.

Positive Feedback Situations

Here are some situations that I can think of:
  • Customer Service Person was better than expected
  • The teacher gave an interesting Lecture
  • Health care professional helped you get better
  • A Local Business gave you a huge discount

There are innumerable situations that can encourage people and build them up. Feedback is a very essential component to grow better. We all need it, but not the destructive kind that tears people down. So whether you are giving positive or negative feedback it is both healthy and essential.

You could use some of the pointers I gave you earlier and drop a line or two on paper. 

You could even tell the person and share a positive review online.

In Conclusion

I think all of us would love to hear kind and encouraging words that break our routines and remind us we are doing things make a difference (though we do not realise it).

Receiving feedback can be difficult, but constructive and well-communicated feedback can really help people.

Please do consider sharing any constructive feedback, it would be a blessing. Do like & share this article.

Thank you for stopping by. I will meet you in the next article.

References:





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The Art of not joining a course you don't need and not be sucked into joining one.

August 05, 2020

The Art of not joining a course you don't need and not be sucked into joining one.


As an Educator blogging was a new task. As I mentioned earlier, after a lot of prodding and pushing from friends and family I decided to do this.

It's been a learning experience. I must say, Do I recommend it for everyone yes and no.

No, Because as a Trainer who teaches Communication skills I don't think it to be the sole medium out there.

I must admit I initially thought of it as not something that important...But it surprised me the potential that simple activities like blogging and vlogging can have.

It is tremendous. Just move over to Patreon and see Artists, Educators, Vloggers, Musicians sharing their passion and people supporting them. It's so encouraging.


Is there a Magic Formula?

Yes, Passion & Hardwork. It cannot be taught, but it can be 'Caught'.

Nowadays there the internet is sort of flooded with courses. Some of them promise huge incomes and quick. solutions.

So are all of them frauds? Maybe not. I believe it also depends on the students too.

Let me explain 'Why' and 'How'.


The 'Why'  

Before we undertake any study, we need to understand some background about it.

I remember earlier in the days when 3D animation was one of the new courses been offered amongst various other computer courses.

People would join a computer course thinking that they would be able to create animations. 

It's only after spending much time and understanding that they would see the difference.

It was spending time and effort to study what was going on that helped them see the difference.

So if you join a wrong course, Maybe the Marketing was exaggerated and maybe they promised the moon and you did n't get it, but I do think it's also important to understand the topics that are going to be covered in a course.

This would help you evaluate the usefulness of it. Secondly, I would give importance to understanding the credibility of the Instructor.

Testimonials are good, but case studies are better. It would help you see how the system or information they are teaching has been making a difference.


The 'How'

So here I am going to look at 'How' about being misdirected into joining a course, community, or anything you don't want to be a part of.

Marketing is a lovely tool to present the best service or product. But can be misused to misdirect and get a sale.

Eventually, you get sucked into a funnel which later would seem like a long rabbit hole. One that rips you off at various junctures or maybe even benefits you.

So to understand How one can be responsible for all this could be to look at our motives.

Some examples of wrong motives. We want a quick fix to learning a major skill or we think we can hear our way to Experience. The wrong idea that only learning or hearing about something is enough.

Most of us will agree that first-hand experience is really valuable and that sometimes are individual experiences though useful to others can sometimes not fit right with everybody.

It's just a human experience. Now coming back to the 'How' question. I would say it is important to take responsibility for our learning.

What does this mean in real life...Doing background research into what you are seeking to learn and how this relates to you.

How the course would help you achieve your goals and it could practically help you. It is possible courses could meet 80% of what you expected. Would that be reasonable... 

Related to that would be. What was participation like?

Did you give feedback to the instructor, How did the instructor receive the feedback? 

Did you come to the course with certain misconceptions about the course?

Many important and related questions that would surely come to our minds. But I do think it all starts with the student.

In short, your Homework starts before you join the course.


3 Things to look at while joining a 'Course'


Look before you leap

Joining a Course is not a short cut to Learning


Yes, you read it right. Joining a course can be fun, but as an instructor, we can influence our students a lot.

But using this influence to hard-sell products, in my opinion, is wrong.

So before doing a course, we must be clear just not about the title of the course. We must also have a look at what is taught in the course.

Just joining a course will not make you a Super Digital marketer or get you $10k income per month.

Yes, it can teach you a system that can help. 

But the important thing to realize is that ultimately the responsibility of taking action resides solely on your shoulders.


Focus on the 20%

   Interesting Video by Coffeezilla on Fake guru courses

Use the Pareto principle, Understand what is the chunk of the course that can help you.

Try to understand how the remaining course ties up with what course promises to deliver.

Explore the topics you are learning by reading some white papers and case studies.

This will broaden your understanding. It will give a better grip on the topic.

But on the flip side, if not done properly it can lead to just absorbing information and lack of action.


Teaching is an art

Being a Teacher is an art, and just not a Profession


Just because someone is a good artist or musician or Marketer, it does n't mean that the person is going to be a good teacher.

Teaching is an art and experience teaches you a lot. Just like other professions, one is a good or a bad teacher which is different from a Non-Teacher (Or one could say an Educator).

I believe a good Educator should balance Theory and Application. Some people would not like Theory.

I believe Theory is important because it gives you the vocabulary to stay tuned with ongoing Research and connected with the shared body of knowledge in a given area of study or field.


Wrapping it up

We live in an information age, but educating ourselves becomes even more important to avoid bad choices.

It is a great endeavour to continually educate ourselves, to learn new ideas and change.

But the reality also is that Education has a commercial side to it. 

Please do Share your feedback in the comment section, I would like to know about any experiences you had with online courses. 

It would be interesting to know about any experience, Good or Bad.

Thank you for your time...Meet you in the next blog post. Ciao!

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