In my personal branding workshops, I encourage people to start a blog … and I’m always faced with resistance, what I’ve referred to in previous posts as a typical reaction of your Lizard Brain. Here are some of the “logic” used by the your Lizard Brain:
Why would anyone want to read what I have to say?
Why would anyone take me seriously? What are my credentials?
What if what I have to say does not sit well with others?
What if people don’t like what I have to say?
I don’t have the sufficient of expertise to write about a subject …
I don’t have the time or skills to blog …
The list of excuses presented by your Lizard Brain are endless … but the operative word here is “excuses”! I was recently asked to talk to the class of MSc in Management Consulting at GGSB about their consolidated management consulting blog initiative aimed at showcasing the individual skills of the students enrolled in the program. In class of 14 students with 10 different nationalities, the potential is incredible and so is the opportunity, but I couldn’t help but sense the overwhelming doubt they collectively had with regards to their abilities to shine!
Allow me to shed some light on the concept of blogging, in the hope of reducing that fear factor related to the above-mentioned excuses! What’s a blog? According to dictionary.com, a blog is “a Web site containing the writer’s or group of writers’ own experiences, observations, opinions, etc ..”. Think of blogging as an opportunity to showcase your point of view to the world. Since it’s your point of view, there’s no right and wrong answer; it’s merely an opinion. That opinion; however, shapes your personal brand to whoever comes across your post.
Blogging is not showing off what you know, it’s more about openly discussing what and how you think! When I first started blogging in late 2009, my knowledge and experience in Personal Branding was in its infancy phase, but that didn’t stop me from sharing my opinion about the subject that I’m passionate about. Since then, I have read dozens of books about Personal Branding and I got certified as a Personal Branding Strategist and my opinion (showcased in my blog posts) continues to evolve on a daily basis.
I would like to tackle one of the excuses mentioned earlier in particular: “What if what I have to say does not sit well with others?” Think of it as a litmus test: the moment you have people disagreeing with you is the moment you realise that you’re being true to yourself, your brand. Word of caution though, make sure you support your opinion … saying, “I don’t agree, just because” is not an opinion, it’s a death sentence! One that would certainly harm your personal brand and give you zero credibility.
Blog about your passion! If you’re studying to be a consultant, don’t write about consultancy – voice your opinion about certain consulting practices based on your field of interest, or simply share your thoughts on how you would tackle certain issues differently. Here’s an example: let’s say you’re studying to be a management consultant and you are very passionate about the Food & Beverage Industry … from your personal experience of dining out talk about what value added you’d bring to the “table” if you were to handle this particular restaurant – maybe you have an opinion about ameliorating the customer experience, or the service … you always have an opinion, and blogging is your opportunity to share that. Maybe when you post your blog about that experience, you can tag that particular brand on twitter, and get a call from their management to discuss it. The possibilities are endless … I promise!
If you were to take one thing from this post, make sure you remember that you don’t have to be an expert to blog, you just have to have an opinion … and each of us does! So what are you waiting for, tell that voice in your head to stop talking and start writing … trust me, you’ll surprise yourself in the process! I know I have.