What is the easiest way to build a personal brand?
There is no “easy” way to build a personal brand.
Claiming that you’re an expert in something is 1% of the equation.
The other 99% can only be backed up my consistent work that is helpful to others.
So, the “easiest” way to build a personal brand is to find…
- Work that you love to do
- An audience that you love to serve
With these two ingredients, doing consistent work that is helpful to others feels easy.
If you’ve ever heard anyone say that their work “doesn’t feel like work,” chances are, they are doing work that they love to do — for an audience that they love to serve.
Now, discovering the work you love to do and an audience you love to serve is a lifelong pursuit for many.
It’s an incredibly deep, complex topic.
It takes some people decades to figure it out for themselves.
Here’s what’s helped me figure it out:
When trying to find the work you love to do…
- Think about your childhood. What did you love to do as a child?
- Think about your personality. What are you naturally inclined to do based on your personality?
- Think about what puts you in a flow state. What activity causes you to stop looking at the clock and become absorbed in your work?
When trying to find an audience you love to serve…
- Think about who asks you for help the most. If a certain group of people are asking for your help more than others, that’s a sign.
- Think about who you would work with for free. If you like working for a certain type of people so much that you’d do it for free, that’s a sign.
- Think about a former version of yourself. If a certain type of people reminds you of a former version of yourself you’d like to help, that’s a sign.
You can’t really “pick” these things.
If you could simply pick work you loved or an audience you love to serve, then everybody would be doing this.
Instead, you discover these areas by exploring — your past, present, and future.
Building a personal brand is about building. Building is never easy.
But you can make it “easier” when you find that critical combination of work you love for an audience you love to serve.
Does putting personal website on your resume help you get a job, and if so, what should be the contents of that page?
A personal website — if relevant to the job you’re applying for — will help you win said job.
(The same goes for if you’re applying to win a freelance or consulting project)
Employers and clients already use your website as a filter when deciding on whether to hire you.
Four out of five prospective buyers will check out your website before doing business with you.
And Tiago Forte, productivity expert and founder of Forte Labs, tells a great story about how he was once instructed to hire a candidate — and he was handed two piles of resumes:
- Those with a website
- Those without a website (which went straight to the trash can)
Sure, you could get jobs and clients without your personal website — but why make things harder for yourself?
If you want to create a personal website that helps you win jobs, here’s what you put on it:
- Content — demonstrate your expertise, your thinking, and your interests
- Now — talk about what you’re working on now, and why
- Resume — create a page to host your resume/CV
- Contact information — make it easy for others to contact you
- Praise — include testimonials from other people praising you
Don’t try and make it perfect.
Just start and get it done.
Do it badly if you have to — but get something up online.
You’ll improve it over time, and it will evolve with you.
As someone who’s won jobs, clients, and customers through my personal website, I believe it’s the most important asset of your career.
In a time where networking in person is tough, create a personal website that does your networking for you.
You’ll be glad you did.
Freelancing vs doing a regular job: which is better? Why?
As someone who’s spent years doing both…
Pros of Freelancing
- Freedom: It’s awesome being able to wake up and work on what you want with who you want.
- Flexibility: You get to determine your own schedule and work at a pace that fits your style.
- Potential: Freelancing will force you to develop your personality and improve yourself so that you can reach your true potential.
Cons of Freelancing
- Marketing & Sales: You’ll spend 80% of your time (at least in the early days) marketing and selling your services instead of practicing your craft.
- Job Boards: Until you’re good at marketing and sales, you’ll have to compete with hundreds of thousands of other freelancers on crappy job boards that take your money.
- Long-Term Game: Freelancing requires you to learn MANY skills, and it takes a while to pull them all together to run a successful business.
Pros of Office Jobs
- Teamwork: Working with a team and building things together is really fun and rewarding.
- Social Aspect: Your coworkers can become your friends and it will improve your social life and sense of belonging.
- Mentorship: A good manager functions somewhat like a mentor, teaching you new skills, and advancing your career.
Cons of Office Jobs
- Commute: Need I say more? Any commute over 20 minutes is a mega-drain.
- Perceived Stability: They’re perceived as more stable, but in reality, you can be let go at any time.
- Micro-management: A bad manager will tell you what to do and this can make you miserable at work.
So, which is better?
It depends on…
- Your personality
- Your level of experience
- Your ability to go outside of your comfort zone
- And many, many more factors
I think it’s a good idea to spend 2–3 years in an office job, and then take those skills you learned to start a freelancing business.
Try both. See which one you like better.
And you always reserve the right to change your mind.
Can an introvert become a salesman?
I’m an introvert and I do a lot of sales.
If you’re an introvert and you want to succeed in sales, you have to approach sales a bit differently.
Here are a couple of strategies that work really well for me:
Only sell your own product. As an introvert, you’ll naturally become more enthusiastic about your own products/services. You’ll win more sales when clients can feel your enthusiasm for what you’re selling.
Think “strategy sessions” instead of “sales calls.” You’re not there to close a deal. You’re there to add value to your prospect whether they buy or not. Aim to provide them with value even if they don’t end up buying your product.
Make it all about your prospect. Imagine your prospect has a sign on their head that says “make me feel special.” Effective selling isn’t about you or your product. It’s about your prospect — their needs, problems, desires, and dreams.
Use your listening skills. Don’t interrupt. Focus on what they are saying. Re-iterate what they are saying back to them. Ask deep, meaningful questions. This will help you uncover what they really want.
Embrace the role of a Challenger. A Challenger salesperson embraces their different view of the world, understands the prospect’s business, and tailor their approach to what the prospect desires— and they are much more effective than other types of sellers:
Remember, no matter your personality, being good at sales is paramount:
“Learn to sell. Learn to build. If you can do both, you will be unstoppable.”—Naval Ravikant