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VIEWPOINT: What do people like about you?

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Perception, more often than not, overrules the facts. The way people perceive you has an enormous impact on how successful you are, and can be, in both your professional and private life. Your own unique personal brand is of critical importance and should be proactively managed to reflect the authentic you in the most flattering manner.

It is no longer only a question of what people say about you when you leave the room, it is also what information is available in the e-room. How does this correlate with what you believe to be your key strengths, your unique selling points and those things that distinguish you from everyone else? These are important considerations to manage, and are often easier done than one imagines.

Ask yourself, others and Google to establish what current perceptions of you comprise. Relax if you end up surprised, as this is only the first step in positively impacting people’s perception of you.

Then, ask yourself how you would describe your core strengths. How would you define what the areas are in which you are best suited to add the most value? Link your core strengths to where you are able to contribute most optimally, to where you are able to effect the most meaningful and lasting change. When you apply your true strengths in this manner, the differentiating effect it will have will set you apart.

Next, proactively and continually ensure that you portray your true strengths, and in so doing achieve the desired results effortlessly by, at all times, living your authentic self. Give freely; be willing to provide others with access to your strengths, always proactively sharing information for the benefit of those around you resulting in the most positive perception possible. The most powerful testimonials are where people are so enamoured by what you have achieved that they spread the word and act as your personal brand ambassadors.

Lastly, in your journey, it is important to appreciate how much people value those who can always be trusted to deliver, versus the perception around people who cannot always be trusted to act and behave in the same manner.  “Consistency is far more impactful than moments of greatness”*.

Remember, there is no point in trying to be someone else or something you are not. It is simply too hard to persistently keep up pretences, and it really is not necessary. We were all blessed with talents as unique as our fingerprints and DNA – relax, enjoy and make the most of it!

When facing the audience of life, just be the best you are when no-one is watching!

*Ray Davis Donna Rachelson – Branding & Marketing YOU

Author: Anneke Andrews CA(SA) is the Director that leads RecruitTalent at Deloitte