In a perfect world, everything we do is consistent with all of our core values.
In a perfect world, we spend our time pursuing these values.
This is not a perfect world; and we do not always get the opportunity to pursue those activities consistent with our core values. We have to leverage our daily activities to the extent they are in our control, so most of them are consistent with our core values.
From Monday through Friday, most of your waking hours will be spent pursuing your career. Why not pursue your career and as many of your core values at the same time?
Your Personal Brand Homework
In my last post, we emphasized two key points.
The first was to block out ten minutes every day to work on building your brand. By my calculations—assuming you did your homework—you invested a little more than an hour in the past week towards building your brand.
The second point, and your homework assignment, was to create a list of twentyish things that are important to you–those things closely associated with your core values. Assuming your list is complete and the items are ranked in order of importance, you are ready to begin the next step.
Now take out that list. Look at the top two or three items. We already know these are important to you. But how important are they? How much weight do you put on each? In other words, how much more important is your first item than your second, and so on and so forth? It is quite likely that the top one or two items are the most important by far. Assuming this is the case, it is these values that you will look for in a career.
Your Core Values
Let’s take a closer look at these and try to understand them on an intimate level because these will be a major part of your brand. For example, the top two items on my list are spending quality time with my family and a need to make a positive difference in the world. With those, I leveraged my personal brand.
It is your top values that you will look at to leverage for your personal brand. These are going to be the values you should be using to define who you are and at the same time differentiate you from your “competition.”
By aligning your values with your brand, you are letting potential employers know who you are and what positions are going to be a fit with your brand. After all, your brand is you. In other words, identifying your brand will not only help you seek out positions consistent with your values, it also helps a potential employer who understands your brand to match an appropriate position for you.
In my next post, we will take those top values to the next level.
Howard, an Associate Professor of Marketing in the Mihaylo College of Business and Economics at the California State University Fullerton, earned his Ph.D. from Temple University. Prior to joining the faculty at Cal State, Howard was on the faculty at Drexel University and The Pennsylvania State University. A native of Philadelphia, Howard has extensive experience in the public and private sectors working for organizations such as the Department of Defense, Motorola, and the CSX railroad. His research expertise is in branding, sustainability, strategic pricing, and education. In addition to teaching at Cal State, Howard has a consulting business focused on branding. You can follow Howard on Twitter or connect with him at Linkedin.