Thursday, January 14, 2016

When Your Personal Brand Comes In Clutch

Working for the man, chasing the dollar, yes siring, hustling 24-7 only to reach your companies goals. Congratulations you officially joined the ranks of the rat race, and perhaps one day you might be promoted. This image is what comes to mind when I think of the above statements.

All of your hard work is getting you nowhere.  So how do you get off the proverbial gerbil wheel? How do you standout from the pack? You need to become the best at what you do.  You need to want it more than anyone else, have a voracious appetite for knowledge and the desire to become the "expert" in your field. Although, I cringe when someone refers to themselves an expert . . . but I digress.

People have been tossing around the term "personal branding" for some time, but what does that even mean? How do I go about building my personal brand? What do I want my personal brand to represent? and most importantly, what is the pay off?

First and foremost you need to determine what you want to be known for? When people here or see your name, what is it that you want them to think of?  Write down the top three to five words that come mind.  For example if you are in real estate your top five words might be; deal maker, successful, strong negotiator, trust worthy and likable.

Now it's time to putting all of these key characteristics front and center with the community you want to inspire.  Share the stories of your success and how you overcome challenge, post inspirational and positive messages, consider starting a micro-blog (like this one) to become a thought leader in your industry.  Don't have time for blogging?  Pictures are a quick and easy short cut to showcasing your successes and the successes of your clients. Some of the most important platforms to build your personal brand are; Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.  

This seems like a lot of work . . . So when will my personal brand come in clutch?
  1. When a potential client has a need for your product or services.
  2. When a promotion opens up with your organization.
  3. When your competitor takes notice of you and offers your a better opportunity. 
  4. When you are looking for a new job.
  5. When you are asked to be a guest speaker or a guest blogger.
  6. When others recognize you for being an Industry leader.
  7. When you are invited to expensive conferences at no cost.  
  8. When you can inspire others to grow and improve.
I'm sure there are more scenario's where building your personal brand pays off and if you think of any, please share. Not to pay myself on the back but all of the above mentioned pay-offs have occurred for me, as I continue to build my personal brand and become the best version of myself that I can possibly be.

There is no better time than now to start building your personal brand. If you would like any advice, I'm more than happy to help just send me a message and we can connect.

Friday, May 8, 2015

New Era of Franchisee/Franchisor Relationships

Gone are the dark ages of the metaphorical franchisee vs. franchisor tug of war.   Ushering in a new era of collaboration and win/win success. Still stuck in the past? Here are three ways to evolve.
1. Mandate Cultural Change 

This has to be a mandate that everyone from the home office needs to buy into. If you have employee's who still are hanging onto bad habits and not putting owners first, then it is time to replace those employees with people who have positive attitudes and will be dedicated to putting your owners first.  Now I'm not saying "the tail wags the dog" but   I am saying that you will not evolve if you do not make dramatic changes to create a more owner-centric company.

2. Create various advisory committees 

It's important that owners are part of the decision making process, that they are involved and that collaboration plays a critical role in how you develop new programs, roll out new products or introduce promotions. When owners are involved in the process you get better results and stronger system-wide buy in. I strongly encourage you to have multiple advisory committees for the following reasons; you will have more owners involved, pair owner expertise with the appropriate committee, and the more input the more output. 

3. Always remember the owners are your customers

From the home office prospective always put yourself in the owners shoes. What challenges is he/she dealing with? What are their frustrations? What kind of service would you want? How would you want to be supported or treated? Don't wait for them to call you, be proactive and pick up the phone first. Anticipate needs and try to exceed expectations where and when you can. 

No organization is perfect but you can always strive to improve!

Monday, December 1, 2014

Building A Powerful Marketing Army

As a business owner your greatest assets are your employees. It is entirely up to you how you invest in your assets (employees) and how/what you allow them to do, to help you grow your business.

I challenge you to think of your staff as your "Marketing Army". With some education, training and empowerment your employees can exponentially grow your business by leaps and bounds.  

You need to be certain that their is a bond of trust, and that your employees are passionate about your value proposition.  

Keep in mind, I'm not saying this is a free for all. Be methodical   in building, training, educating and empowering your army. It's also critical that you incorporate processes, accountability and equally important that you recognize your employees and reward them.

Take baby steps, allow each member of your army to earn stripes or ranking.  As he/she succeeds they will earn additional opportunities to help grow your business.  Below are just a few ideas.  Customize your program based on your goals and the abilities of your employees.

  • Brand ambassador
  • Like, comment and share on our Facebook posts                        
  • Pass out marketing collateral on your behalf 

  • Brand Ambassador
  • Like, comment and share your Facebook posts
  • Recommend marketing opportunities
  • Sell or promote on your behalf to groups or organizations 

  • Brand Ambassador
  • Like, comment your Facebook posts
  • Recommend marketing opportunities
  • Sell or promote on your behalf to groups or organizations
  • Create brand evangelists
  • Help execute marketing events 

Here are a few more great articles about great leadership and the importance of empowering your employees.

5 Things Smart Leaders Do To Empower Employees

Forbes 6 Ways To Make Your Leadership & Workplace Fun Again

Leadership Challenge