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The Secret to Career Success: Branding Yourself

branding, marketing
The secret to career success is creating your own personal brand. / Credit: What is your brand image via Shutterstock

While businesses work hard to build up their brand, too many of their employees aren't doing the same for themselves, one researcher suggests.

Nathan Hiller, an associate professor of management at Florida International University, argued during this year's Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology annual conference that it is increasingly important for employees to ensure their own marketability by creating a brand within their organization.

The strategy, termed "personal branding," allows employees to clearly define their potential and separate themselves from others in the workplace while demonstrating unique contributions to their organization.

“There are times when people are narrowly defined by their job description or assignment and feel they have the skills and abilities to make an even greater contribution to the organization," Hiller said. "Personal branding is simply making others both within and outside the workplace aware of one’s capabilities."

When executed strategically, personal branding can lead to increased visibility within an organization and better work opportunities.

Those on the panel — which also included Maria Arboleda, Veronica Harvey and Lisa Lewen from Aon Hewitt, Kelly Goff of ExxonMobil, Charles Thompson from Taylor Strategy Partners and A. James Illingworth of APTMetrics, Inc. — said individuals who engage in branding in an organization need to consider several factors when determining the brand they want to sell, including their own technical skill set, the needs of the organization and softer skills such as networking and interpersonal relationships.

Hiller acknowledged there is a fine line between personal branding and self-promotion.

"There is a difference and personal branding needs to be carried out to benefit the work team and organization and not be detrimental," he said.

Originally published on BusinessNewsDaily.

Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based writer who has nearly 15 years' experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.