Today we’re going to uncover what makes you uniquely you. We’re going to go through your vision, purpose, values, goals, and extract the core of your personal brand.
This worksheet is a slightly adapted version of the original by Meg Guiseppi, a good friend of mine and a leading Personal Branding Expert for executives.
Save your answers in a document on your computer so you can revisit and tweak them later. Your answers here form the foundation of all of your future marketing communications.
I’ve included my own answers along the way as examples. Let’s get started!
Your personal branding worksheet
Before clearly defining your brand, look externally at the bigger picture of your vision for the world. What is your ideal vision of what the world could be?
- My vision is of a world where everyone does what they love, increasing happiness and creativity across the globe.
2. What is Your Purpose?
Now that you have an external goal, look internally: how you can you help the world realize your vision?
- My purpose is to connect passionate people to each other so they can collaborate on meaningful projects.
3. What Are Your Values and Passions?
You have to know yourself and what you want and need before you can move forward. Your belief system and operating principles determine whether an opportunity in front of you will be a good fit. If your passions aren’t met, you probably won’t be happy. What are your passions and values?
- My passion is helping talented people use the web to build their brand and connect to the people they need to achieve their goals.
- My values are simplicity (I spend time doing the things that fire me up and delegate the rest), tangible goals (I break down abstract projects into the actionable items needed to achieve them), and relationships (business is people talking to people – I never see competitors, only collaborators).
4. What Are Your Goals?
Project what you want to accomplish so you can create a strategic action plan to get there. What are your goals?
As CEO of my newly launched company, my goals are:
- In one year, the will be the go-to platform to proactively manage your online reputation and build your personal brand across the web. It will be used by professionals to advance their career online, career coaches and personal branding consultants to help their clients manage their online presence, and by businesses to leverage the individual brands of their employees as marketing tools.
- In two years, I will co-develop the social media curriculum for a top-tier University, bolstering my credibility and positively influencing how future generations use the web.
- In four years, the company will merge with or be acquired by one of the key players in online career development, to offer peerless, integrated services for personal branding, online reputation management and career success.
5. What Are Your Brand Attributes?
What three adjectives best describe the value you offer? What words do you use to define your personality? For example: collaborative, resourceful, flexible, forward-thinking, risk-taking, connected, visionary, diplomatic, intuitive, precise, enterprising, ethical, genuine, accessible. What are your top three brand attributes?
My top three brand attributes (in noun form) are:
- Communicator: I communicate very clearly
- Visionary: I constantly envision what could be
- Connector: I consistently engage with new people from deep a desire to connect with everyone I meet
6. What Are Your Core Strengths?
In what functions and responsibilities do you excel? What things are you the designated “go-to” person for? What would your company have a hard time replacing if you left suddenly? Examples: identifying problems, seeing the details, leading, delegating, performing analysis, fact finding, crunching numbers, anticipating risk, motivating, mentoring, innovating, managing conflict, writing, listening, communicating.
- I excel at communicating actionable next steps to achieve a grander vision; I also excel at attracting the right people to collaborate on meaningful projects.
7. How Do Other People Describe You?
The true measure of your brand is the reputation others hold of you in their hearts and minds. Notice how they introduce you to others. Ask them what your top brand attributes and core strengths are. How does your self-assessment jibe with their feedback?
- People describe me as: driven, self-aware, creative, down to earth, musical and magnetic.
8. What Are Your Weaknesses?
Don’t dwell on your weak points, but keep them in mind so that you don’t move into a position where that function is the main thrust of the job. What are your weaknesses?
- My weakness is perfectionism. I spend a lot of time making sure things sound exactly right. Sometimes, too much time.
9. Who Is Your Target Audience?
Determine where you want to fit in (industry and niche area of expertise). Learn what decision makers in that field are looking for when they’re vetting candidates. Find out where those decision makers hang out and what key words will attract them, and then position yourself in front of them to capture their attention.
- My company’s target audience is passionate people with a clear vision of their future and the drive to get there, but no idea how to tap their network or the web to do it.
10. What Differentiates You From Your Competition?
Determine why decision makers should choose whatever you’re offering over the others offering similar value. What makes you the best choice? What makes you a good investment? What value will you bring that no one else will?
- What differentiates me is my ability to imagine what is possible, then attract the people who should be working together to get it done.
And that’s a wrap on the worksheet. Now it’s your turn! Start at the top of these questions and start typing your answers in a new document. Often, the hardest part is getting started. So don’t worry if your “vision” doesn’t sound right the first time you write it down. Now that it’s written and out of your head, you can start revisiting it and honing it. It will evolve over time.
When you’re ready, write a blog post about your ten answers to let the world know what you’re all about. (There’s nothing like publicly announcing your strengths to motivate you to use them!). Include a link to your worksheet answers in the comments below so I can add it to my list of examples.
Was this exercise helpful for you? What was the hardest part? Would you add any steps or comments along the way? Leave your thoughts below!
Pete Kistler is a leading Online Reputation Management expert for Generation Y, a top 5 finalist for Entrepreneur Magazine’s College Entrepreneur of 2009, one of the Top 30 Definitive Personal Branding Experts on Twitter, a widely read career development blogger, and a Judge for the 2009 Personal Brand Awards. Pete manages strategic vision for Brand‐Yourself.com, the first online reputation management platform for job applicants, named one of the Top 100 Most Innovative College Startups in the U.S.