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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 and editor with nearly 20 years in media. A 1998 journalism graduate of Indiana University, Chad began his career with Business News Daily in 2011 as a freelance writer. In 2014, he joined the staff full time as a senior writer. Before Business News Daily, Chad 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. Chad has also worked on the other side of the media industry, promoting small businesses throughout the United States for two years in a public relations role. His first book, How to Start a Home-Based App Development Business, was published in 2014. He lives with his wife and daughter in the Chicago suburbs.