“Remote work is on the rise”. We hear this all the time, but what does it really mean? Well, it means that more and more people’s jobs are becoming office-less, and working from home has become the new norm. We then also need to be asking, what does this mean for our personal brands if we are disconnected from the workplace?
Rise of the “Telecommuter”
Of course, with the start Covid-19 pandemic we saw an increasing number of remote workers; however, working from home is not new. A 2012 article in ‘The Economist’ which I found recently describes the “telecommuter” who skips long commutes on stuffy trains and spends their days, sometimes in pajamas, in a virtual workplace. The article goes on to raise an important point for personal branding when working remotely, as one can become “out of sight, out of mind” and be deprived of in-person networking opportunities.
Position yourself for success, from home
How do we own our personal brands from home? Working remotely shouldn’t hold you back from developing your personal brand, and positioning yourself for success. And, personal branding is not limited to the entrepreneur, every one of us has a personal brand (whether you’d like one or not). Tom Peters suggests, “We are CEO’s of our own companies: Me Inc. To be in business today, our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called You”. It’s up to you to own it, and start prioritising how you show up. The good news is that you can work to create an authentic, reputable and engaging personal brand from pretty much anywhere, including the comfort of your own home.
Here are four tips to do just that:
TIP 1 | Identify and lean into your strengths
The first step to a successful personal brand is really knowing yourself. Award-winning brand consultant Rita Clifton suggests using the Myers-Briggs analysis as a tool “for understanding yourself, your strengths and areas to watch out for”. Here at DAPPER, we suggest that our clients add Clifton Strengths, Insights Discovery and Enneagram profiling to their toolboxes.
TIP 2 | Be intentional with your communication
Being removed from the workplace does mean that you have to make a conscious effort to schedule time with others. Work to build a reputable person brand, by creating relationships with people from your industry.
Making positive social connections and expanding your network allows more people to come into contact with you, your personal brand and your messaging. Plus, growing your network and sharing valuable, relatable content leads to positive word-of-mouth, a culture of recognition, and makes your personal brand memorable. So, make an effort to schedule a coffee date (or drinks if that’s more your style) with a colleague, attend events in your community, and create those lasting connections.
TIP 3 | Make Zoom your friend
I know, it’s hard. Relentless scheduling of Zoom meetings can leave you feeling drained and depleted at the end of a working day. But we’ve got a few tips on how to harness the power of Zoom (or your preferred virtual platform) to elevate your personal brand, from home.
· Use your camera: I know it’s tempting to keep it off, but letting others see your face allows your personal brand to be visible.
· Maximise your profile: make sure you have a professional display name and profile photo.· Show up professionally: there’s no need to dress in a suit and full-glam, but make sure you’re in business casual (at least on the top half). In addition, ensure your background is neat or use a plain wall – we don’t need to see last night’s dishes in the background!
TIP 4 | Network online
Even though you may be limited in creating a network within your company, there’s nothing stopping you from creating ones on platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook. There are SO many opportunities to network online: attend online conferences and keynotes, engage with colleagues’ posts online and share your own musings!
I’ll leave you with a little exercise to get you started: Grant Cardone says, “People need to know who you are and what you do in the most simple way possible. Keep it simple. You should be able to brand yourself in 5 words or less.” Have a go!