At a recent workshop I ran, one of the attendees asked whether networking works.
I know people in business who swear by the power of networking meetings in growing their business. I also know people who swear just at the thought of going networking. The reality is that for some people it works, and for others it doesn't.
It's a little like Schrodinger's cat. Schrodinger imagined a thought experiment that goes as follows: imagine a cat in a sealed box. In the box there is also a piece of radioactive material that is decaying and will ultimately kill the cat (remember - this is an imaginary cat, not a real one!). How do you know the cat whether the cat is alive or dead? You can't know until you open the box.
I've said before that everyone has a personal brand, whether they know it or not, but we ALL start life as mavericks. A new born baby has no personal brand. It is a blank slate, free thinking, with no preconceptions, no attitudes, no expectations. Over the years, various institutions stamp their mark on us – first family, then culture and a succession of schools, then the companies we work for. Their influence extends into how we think, how we talk, how we dress, the people we mix with, and every other aspect of our life. And all of these make up our personal brand.
It's what we do with those influences that mark out the kind of personal brand that we build for ourselves and the more I’ve thought about it, the more it seems to me that there are 3 levels of personal brand