Why your personal brand matters so much when you start a new job.

Posted: 9th of November 2016 by Emily Dujon

I have worked with hundreds of job seekers either finding them their first ever role through apprenticeships or senior hires looking to get the best bang for their buck in the commercial world. 

The difference between those that succeed and those that fail in their new role though invariably comes down to their own personal brand.

Your employers, your colleagues your team will be making judgements of you from day one. What’s your reputation where you work now? Are you the one that is always just on time or the one that is early? Have you got a reputation as a completer finisher or someone that can never work to a deadline? 

None of these have any real relevance to your skillset in your role more your attitude around it. You should be aware that all of your interactions though are having a real impact on your personal brand within the company you have joined. If you develop a great reputation you will keep that and be let off if you make a mistake, but if you have developed a reputation for being abrupt, being just on time or having to be chased to complete work then any mistakes are going to be not so easily forgiven. This might not be a problem straight away but could easily develop into one in the future. 

So how do you develop your own Personal Brand? 

My advice is to be deliberate and take action on your branding from day one of a new job. 

If you need to start at 0900, don’t aim for 0900, aim for 0830 or even better 0800, then if worst case scenario you are 30mins late you are still getting to the office early and you develop a reputation for being early. I love it when I get feedback from hiring managers and employers have that kind of feedback for me for a new hire. 

Another major area for developing a great personal brand is through your attitude. Now, you might think you have a great attitude but this is about how you are perceived by your team, your manager, your MD, even the company CEO. Sometimes snap judgements can be made just from your body language when they walk through the office, so be aware. I find that the best advice that I can give on this is being an active listener

Be the person that takes notes, reconfirm what you have been told and ask questions when you don’t understand. Simply through taking notes and being active others will see that you are motivated, keen to learn and do well in your new role. If you are taking notes whilst someone is showing you something this just adds extra confidence in you as someone that takes on information and is interested in improving. Better that than tapping the side of your head to show your new employer that you’ve taken everything in (trust me I have seen this with my own eyes!).   

This might sound like blindingly obvious advice but as I know people don’t take ownership for these basic tactics, I had to spell them out. 

Again, I love when I get feedback from clients and they say how great Johny is going:

“Yes, he’s always one of the first in the office and he is so keen to learn, he just takes notes all the time. It’s a pleasure to have someone like him in the office.” 

This is such a motivator for me. 

When you have advanced past these stages and you want to really take control of your new role and your brand then you should definitely look to setup 1-2-1’s with your colleagues to understand their roles, not just in your team but others as well. Go for coffees with them, understand what their jobs are and how what you do has an influence on them. Show yourself as a positive fixer and doer. Your reputation and positive brand will only continue to grow. 

If you are just starting a new role and want to smash your branding out of the park let me know. I am always happy to have a conversation to help someone just starting a new role.  

Contact: James@ldngrp.co / Tel: 0203 653 1072 / Mob: 07813 012 230 / Linkedin: James / @JODonnellCoach

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