A couple of days ago, I started a class for becoming an Agile certified product owner.
Basically, what that means is that I had to attend a two-day class which was a ton of fun! If you’re new to Agile, the product owner is the role in the team that prioritizes the work the team needs to get done in a given sprint. It teaches you how to prioritize your work based on your user’s needs and other requirements. During this class, we got to play with LEGOs. We had to work as a team to get the requirements for what we needed to build which was a challenge.
Now, I’ve watched my son play LEGOs. One thing I noticed that he does with everything that he builds is that he’s very thoughtful in how and where he puts each and every block. For a five-year old, I think it’s really awesome. He builds his own vehicles, and he makes his own requirements up. It’s very creative.
So, how does this relate to building your personal brand?
Remembering this got me thinking when I was working with the teams during the class activity. It really highlighted a whole lot of instinctual things that we tend to do in the workplace or in our own business. Whatever deliverables or project you might be working on, there’s definitely some structure. It doesn’t have to be very rigid, but there is some sort of formula to achieve success.
Watch the video:
Just like when playing with LEGOs, when building your personal brand…
# 1 – You need to prioritize
I was playing with LEGOs and having a good time, but one of the key lessons I’m learning has to do with prioritization. It’s about how you’re managing your time and your resources to make sure that you’re getting something to market, that you’re getting something out there.
When we talk about personal branding, we’re talking about building your digital platform, maybe on WordPress or Squarespace. Now, how are you going about that? Are you just shooting from the hip and signing up for an account and then trying to do it on your spare time?
That works for some people, but in my experience, it has caused major delays in trying to build personal websites or even niche websites for niche brands. If you work better like that or you want to give that a shot, then I definitely recommend that you follow a Kanban style method because it might seem and feel like there are no time-bound requirements for you to get your website up and get your content out there. But, what I found is that, even though it may not seem like it, you still have time-bound commitments. You have your scheduled content or your one-month deliverables that have to demonstrate what kind of work you actually do.
Now, if you’re working through building your own personal brand while you’re working a full-time job, it may be hard to stick to time-bound commitments because you’re doing this part-time, but you know that it’s important and that it needs to get done.
So, how do you do it?
#2 – You need to plan how to tackle the work
You can do it by using sprints. Sprints are basically time bound two-week or four-week cycles of planned work that you prioritize. This is when you do the work or tasks necessary to get a minimum viable product, which is an up and running version of your platform.
You have to plan your work accordingly. Size-up the work that you have to do, so you can project how long it’s going to take you to launch your website.
I say that with a grain of salt because you still have a lot more work to do. Maybe the design is not the way you want it. Maybe there’s other little things that you have to do, like adding the email marketing service provider. There’s other things that you can add later on down the road. But the most important thing is, how are you going to define what your minimum viable product is?
We’ll talk more about those things in future posts. The key thing I wanted to point out is that building a personal brand is just like building anything else.
Much like when building with LEGOs, you have to remember…
#3 – You also need to have fun
Building your personal brand does take planning. It does take preparation. Most importantly, you need to have fun with it. If you’re not having fun with it, then you’re going to just give up on it.
If you’re working in a full-time job, it can also be very time consuming if you’re not approaching it in an efficient and methodical way.
For me, I get up early in the morning and I work on my website before I go to work and before I get my kids ready for school, but it’s something I love to do. So, I don’t mind getting up early and doing it. I don’t mind sacrificing some time at night instead of watching a couple episodes of Game of Thrones. (Of course, I’ve got another two years until the next season comes out.)
If you motivate yourself and you find why you’re doing it, it’s going to really help you build your brand for the long term. That’s what we’re here for. We’re not here trying to get rich quick.
This would also help you in your corporate job. If you want to get the right kind of job, the only way you’re going to get promoted is to promote yourself. Whenever you go to a job interview, you’re promoting yourself. So, why should any other day be any different?
If you have a website, a place for you to post content and share your expertise with the world, that’s going to get you much farther ahead than just the average person who’s just trying to whip up a resume because either A) they lost their job or B) they got so fed up with it that they just decided to quit and is now looking for a new one.
So, focus on the long term and go whip out some LEGOs and see what you can build. 😊
I hope this helps you to think about how to get started with your personal brand. If you have any questions or comments, leave them in the comments box below. I’d love to hear from you!