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Building Your Brand as an Emerging Leader or Technical Expert – NOTES

Presenter: Jo Miller  Twitter @jo_miller
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  • Comes up in your career when you least expect it, but you can’t seem to get recognized as a leader, take on a new role, etc.
    • You can’t get a higher level job without leadership experience
  • Don’t wait for permission or an invitation to lead
  • Don’t wait for someone to promote you
  • Take charge of your own career trajectory

Are you the best kept secret in organization?
  • A gap of what you bring the table vs. what everyone else thought – how to close it
  • You already have a brand, but it may have taken place by default
  • Rebrand yourself by design vs. by default
  • “Be family for something! Know what is your claim to fame.” – General Manager, Software Industry
  • Figure out what your differentiator is and make it your brand
  • Who do you know who has branded themselves well?

In This Workshop
  • Your ideal career niche
  • Your leadership brand
  • Making your value visible

Your Ideal Career Niche
  • What are you passionate about?
    • What do you spend most of your time doing and lose time doing?
  • What are you skills and talents?
    • What are the areas where people go out of there way to praise you on?
  • What does your company/industry need and value?
    • You constantly need to ask yourself this question (at least once or twice per year)
  • NOTE: all three need to be done, not just the first two! You could end up with an expensive hobby!

Your Leadership Brand
  • Analyst —> change agent
  • Technical Lead (picked apart issues due to problem solver)—> a passion for excellence (asking others to come on board and collaborate)
  • Principal Software Engineer —> Turnaround architect for struggling projects and teams
  • Program Director (loved to dive into a chaotic situation and give it order, but always looking for the next chaotic situation)—> Go-to person for strategy (Next: said company needed a dedicated office for corporate strategy and “she knew the perfect person for the job”)

Make your brand scalable!
Your brand must evolve as your develop your career
  • Entry-level brands
    • Valuable contributor, Team Player, Specialist, Go-to person
  • Mid-level brands
    • Strategist, Innovator, Subject Matter Expert, Change Agent, People Motivator, Project Leader, Builds Things that Work, Turnaround Architect, Intrapreneur (works for a company)


  • Senior-Level brands
    • Visionary, Thought Leader, Leader who develops leaders, Charismatic Leader, Rainmaker, Quiet Leader

Develop a personal brand statement.