Whatever we do, in life or leadership – we all get branded. Even a simple movement or gesture by our bodies can create a positive or negative impression to others. The words that come out of our mouth has an impact on who we are. The way we act can influence others perception of us. Well the list can go on. What we need to realise is that our brand, which is our special touch, has several layers which, when properly leveraged can help us bridge the gap between merit and success.

I had the opportunity to lead a session on Building Your Personal Brand, for the LeanIn Chapter in Singapore. What some of the participants and leaders felt about the session was

1. The approach to this topic was an eye-opener on multiple levels – physical, emotional and cognitive

2. It clearly did not focus on the marketing and advertising lens which is usually the conventional approach to branding

I want to share some simple yet powerful approach to bridge the gap between your merit and your success.

1. The Foundation for Your Personal Brand is your Body. If your body is the fulcrum for your brand, you need to give it a more holistic care – How are you building on our strength, endurance, flexibility, balance and agility to create the impact of your physical presence? These five elements should help build your Executive Presence through our body postures, gestures and strength, Executive Endurance through our tenacity to stretch, Mental Flexibility through our embracive approaches, Emotional Balance through our assertive responses, thereby leading to the net result of your cognitive dexterity.

2. Once you have a reasonably good foundation, which you have consciously nurtured, you have now earned the right to raise some strong pillars for your brand – How do we look? How do we Sound? How do we Act? Your pillars should help you address the yin-yang of our Presence – which is the physical and psychological aspects of how you create a lasting impression on people you interact with.

3. Continuously working on your foundation and pillars, can then accelerate and multiply your brand value. The specific accelerators that you need to consciously weave through your presence are the components of

* Value – Are you connecting with people at the Values level?

* Knowledge – Is your knowledge a mix of intellectual, emotional and EXECUTION quotient?

* Credibility – Are you building your credibility by consistently practicing Self-Trust?

4. If you want to multiply the impact of our brand, you need to consciously build and leverage your personal and social networks.

*How are you consciously building your network that taps into your emotional maturity and also a network that acts as your lever for your impact and growth?

*Are you consciously focusing on our social presence – which helps you showcase your thought leverage and diversity – not just in the areas of your work, but something that aligns to your life purpose and passion.

My intent to share this structure to build your brand presence, is based on the fact that increasingly through our various training and coaching interactions we are coming across some fantastic leaders with passion and drive – the one simple ingredient that has the potential to accelerate success to leaders in their Executive Presence.