Build Your Leadership Brand

Build Your Leadership Brand

"Your personal brand is a promise to your clients… a promise of quality, consistency, competency, and reliability."  Jason Hartman.

These are the days of branding to stand out from others. As every individual has a name, you must also have a brand for yourself to stand out from others. It serves as an image and helps you personally, professionally and socially to provide meaning to your life.

Here is how you build your brand.



Adopt ABCDE of Branding

Where A stands for anchoring your aspirations and expectations to your audience; B stands for building your audience as per your passions, principles and philosophies; C stands for communicating clearly with your audiences about your ethics apart from sharing your domain expertise; D stands for demonstrating your domain expertise continuously; and finally, E stands for engaging your audiences with an etiquette to establish yourself.


Trifurcate Your Vision

When you want to brand yourself you must have a vision. You can divide your vision into three segments: personal, professional and social. That means how you want to be remembered personally; how you want to influence others professionally; and how you want to impact the society. You must write down them on a piece of paper to capture your thoughts. It provides you with clarity, and then share it with others though stories. Take feedback from others and mold yourself to create a viable and feasible final vision that can be executed effectively. For instance, personally, I would like to become President of India by 2030; professionally, I would like to share my knowledge with the world to excel as an international thought leader in the area of leadership; and socially, I want to groom one million students as global leaders on non-profit basis. I am building 50 core team members through 5 levels of leadership who will assist me to accomplish my goal to groom one million students as global leaders. After trifurcating your vision, ensure that all three visions are well aligned to achieve your goals quickly and smartly. Invest your energies and efforts consistently to achieve the three outcomes simultaneously.


Execute Effectively

Look at your passionate interests first. Identify your value system. Align them and contribute in those areas regularly. Over a period of time, you find amazing improvement in your brand. Contribute articles in your area of interest through trade journals. Open a blog and share your ideas and insights so that more readers will follow you and that makes your brand building much easier. Join associations to connect with others. Share your knowledge through training and teaching programs. Author books in your domain. Approach and anchor from multiple channels systematically and consistently. You will be surprised to find an amazing brand for yourself. Additionally, identify and create a group of stakeholders who can help you in branding. Involve them aggressively by sharing your passion and vision. In this way, you reach out to more people thus minimizing dependence on a single stakeholder. Don't dilute your brand after building it. Remember, your brand is your bread and butter. After building your brand, you must sustain and preserve it. Ensure that you take all precautions to avoid getting noticed for wrong reasons.


Interweave Internally and Externally

You must build your professional image internally and externally. Internally, acquire knowledge regularly in your passionate areas and externally share it with others systematically. Join as an advisory board member; be a member of panel discussion and participate in conferences. Be a volunteer in your area of interest. Work in both profits and non-profits the way Peter Drucker did it. When you work in profits you earn money for your maintenance and livelihood. When you work in nonprofits you make a difference in the lives of others. Hence, you must balance your time properly.

When you want to build your brand, it must appear realistic and acceptable to your audiences. You must inspire them through clear-cut blueprint to enable them to share and spread to others. It must be visible to many people and they must talk about it. Hence, your branding must be inspiring and compelling for your audiences.


Brand Yourself through Social Media

Currently social media is growing rapidly. You can take support of this amazing media to share your ideals and ideas to brand yourself globally. You can brand yourself quickly and smartly once you are acquainted with social media. You can brand yourself professionally through LinkedIn. You can brand socially through Facebook. You can brand as a celebrity through Twitter. If you open blogs, you can brand yourself as a domain expert. There are other social media including Google+ that help you brand yourself. Remember the slogan, more display, more sales. Hence, you must brand yourself to stand out from others. At the same time, don't boost yourself or blow your trumpet. Find out the difference between boosting and boasting and balance judiciously to build your brand consistently with authenticity. When you look at Steve Jobs, he branded himself as an innovation guru. When you look at Richard Branson, he himself is an international brand. Hence, you can learn from such leaders who branded themselves globally.


Create an Everlasting Brand

Branding provides you an identity. MultiChannel News quoted, "Branding gives you an exceptionally effective way to broadcast who you are to your target market quickly and efficiently". When you are called by your name, you get excited. Similarly, when you are connected with your passionate area and called by your brand name, you get excited as it conveys your value system, principles and philosophy. Hence, choose your passions; look for your potential; follow the road less traveled; spot your talents; acquire skills; blend your talents with skills; reinvent with changing times and technologies to create an everlasting brand for yourself to live beyond your lifetime.

"The CEO is not the brand! It is not about you. You are a temporary steward of a wonderful enterprise, so leave it in better shape than you find it". Sam Palmisano, IBM.

Prof. M.S. Rao
International Leadership Guru

Copyright © 2014 • UN Post • All Rights Reserved

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If you brand well you can ensure your bread forever because your brand will protect you. Whether you are an employee, or employer or entrepreneurs it is imperative build your brand.

I welcome Prof Rao's insights and ideas. I am his follower.

Dr. K.K. Reddy

A great article on build your leadership brand. It is applicable for individuals and institutions. Everyone must read this article.

Revanth Kumar Reddy

It is a wonderful resource for learning and leadership. It effectively emphasizes vision, mission and execution to build your leadership brand.

Appreciate reading more such articles from Professor Rao.

Sukanya Reddy

A very useful resource on personal and professional branding. It is worth investing your time to know fundamentals of branding which are often neglected by many people.

Imran Khan

The mnemonic device of ABCDE of branding is very good. It is easy to remember and is very apt. I congratulate the writer for contributing an excellent piece on branding.

Everyone has to brand to grow personally and professionally in this cut-throat competitive world.

Look forward to reading more such articles.

Ramya Krishna

These are the days of branding. As institutions get branded individuals should also get branded to ensure their career success. Most of the global leaders succeeded because of their branding. Their brand protected them. If you look at Steve Jobs, he branded himself as an innovation guru. Hence, it is very important to brand locally and globally.

Professor M. S. Rao is really an international guru as he can write articles of various areas. He is a multi-faceted personality who has breadth of knowledge in all areas and depth of knowledge in leadership. I enjoy reading his articles online regularly and acquired immense knowledge. He is passionate to share his knowledge. He is truly a great!

It is an honor for me to have a Guru like Professor M.S.Rao.


It is true that social media plays a crucial role to build your leadership brand. Hence, make use of this wonderful to build your leadership brand. Above all, safeguard your reputation once you build your brand.

Hats off to Professor Rao! I am one of his followers.

Kirti Kumari

A very interesting, inspiring and audacious vision. Professor Rao has rightly trifucarted his vision. He has total clarity about his vision. Hence, execution will be easier. I appreciate his vision to become President of India by 2030. I am sure he will become President of India. India needs intellectuals and visionaries to occupy the highest office.

I also appreciate his passion to build 50 core team members to build one million global leaders. He has a great team members who are his die-hard followers. Professor Rao has a huge social media network and he grew as an international leadership guru because of that. There are die-hard followers who promote his ideas and ideologies through social network. They also promote his doctrine – 'Professor Raoism'. I am one his his die-hard followers. I implore others to join the moment.