Aleteia

Having a personal brand: Healthy self-esteem or cult to self?

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A women's branding expert says it's really about service to others in today's workplace.

Deize Andrade is one of a growing number of women dedicated to personal branding. From Brazil, she focuses on developing aspects of people’s lives to help them reach their goals in the way they manage their image. At a recent Personal Branding Talent Day in Barcelona, we asked her to tell us more about where this notion of personal branding comes from and why concepts like “resilience” and “leadership” are all the rage today.

Why is everyone talking about personal branding, especially for women?

In the last few decades, with globalization and the wide access to information, our professional differentials got diluted in a sea of people with similar formation and training. It seems that most of us are not used to defining a strategy for our life, nor of showing our skills to people who might be interested in them. A personal brand can help us design a personal strategy and make our best points more visible, so that people will want us for what we can offer, and so that we’ll have more opportunities to reach our goals.

Is there a personal brand that is characteristic of the Latin American woman?

There are many associations that fight for women’s rights in Latin America, and perhaps the strongest of all are the ones that work on the issue of sexual violence, or all types of violence, from rape to stalking in the offices, to domestic violence.

As for the personal brand and leadership, we still have few women in directive positions, and we are talking about the topic and making progress little by little.

What is this notion of resilience?

Resilience, or grit, is the capacity to adapt to changes, to get up again, to adjust course and start over when something goes wrong.

But couldn’t this notion of a personal brand just be an exaggerated cult of the self?

I don’t see it as a cult of the self. I see it as putting yourself at the service of others with the best of what we have to offer. That’s why it starts with self-knowledge. We need to be able to say what we really have in order to do things that other people value.

Where is the boundary between exhibitionism and a healthy self-esteem?

That’s a good question. It seems to me that those who reveal too much often have a low self-esteem. The boundary can be precisely in the truth, if we assume that exhibitionism exaggerates one’s qualities too much.

Does branding have anything to do with spirituality?

If you think that spirituality is about finding meaning in life, living according to good values, and serving people, then the people with the most developed spirituality are going to have the most valuable personal brand.

A strong personal brand may have nothing to do with spirituality or even with values, however. We all know of public figures who have strong brands but who don’t use them for the good.

This article was originally published in the Spanish edition of Aleteia and has been translated and/or adapted here for English speaking readers.

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