Personal Branding Education for Executives

Joe President (not his real name) sits stiffly across from me at a Starbucks sipping a latte. He hasn't been in this position very often. "Craig, I don't think my current company has my best interests in mind and I want to look for a new job. I don't really know where to start. I would look at any executive level position, even a step down. But I can't let my current company find out that I am looking!" This is paraphrased from a conversation I had with the President of a privately held software firm this summer.

It's a fairly common thing these days. I run across business leaders often who tell me they would like to quietly look for a new job. The kind of jobs they want are rarely advertised and are not as numerous as a worker-bee job. Many executives haven't been in a job interview in years and really don't know how to market themselves to get one without announcing to their network that they are looking. They have never thought about personal branding. It wasn't taught in MBA school back in their day.

So I advise them to start building their personal brand and that this will have a dual effect. It will increase the marketability of their current company if properly done (perhaps elevating the satisfaction of their current job). And it will increase their personal marketability and recruiter calls without overtly searching for a new position.

In an article from London-based Brand Republic, Brian Oliver says that "many business schools now teach personal branding and reputation management to their MBA students."

It also highlights the fact that many companies are now bolstering their marketing programs via the personal branding of their top people. This, of course, has the side effect of these people getting a much higher number of recruiting calls.

Marketers build brand 'me' to promote their careers - Brand Republi...

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Comment by Amitai Givertz on October 19, 2008 at 6:20pm
Craig, what would say to this recruiter?


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