“A good reputation is more valuable than money.” Publilius Syrus
Your reputation can either make or break you. Your reputation is built on you being noticed for the right reasons. Or not. It is the strongest currency you have to deal with in business. Are you recognizing the value you have in yours?
Your reputation can create opportunities, open doors for you, influence outcomes and influence decisions.
It can take a lifetime to build your reputation and 20 seconds to destroy it. It’s something that is delicate and needs to be treated with constant care. Think Tiger Woods. Unfortunately, I always think of him now as the most epic example of someone who not only destroyed his reputation but the empire that was built from his reputation. An extreme example but he was knocked down and lost millions practically in a day due to the damage to his reputation.
Too often people aren’t aware of the reputation they are creating for themselves. They leave it to chance, which is dangerous. If you aren’t consistently behaving in a way that supports your brand you are at risk of damaging it and leaving people with a confused impression of you. You need to be very conscious of your reputation and how you want to be perceived and ensure you are behaving in a way that supports that 100% of the time.
Being protective of your reputation is paramount and is now even more complex with the social media platforms available to us. All of these mediums have a direct impact on our reputation whether you are 16 or 66. This forms a big part of how people ‘see’ you and what impression you are creating. Given that the six degrees of separation that we use to be exposed to is now reduced to two or three we need to be very conscious of who is connected to whom in the virtual world.
Employers now search social media platforms when vetting job applications or assessing consultants for suitability. So that photo of you being ridiculous with friends on the weekend that you thought was funny may now be viewed as quite the opposite and have an impact of whether you are considered for the role.
Whether you are a C-suite executive, CEO, Director of a company, entrepreneur, employee or student, you need to be deliberate with your reputation and do everything in your power to support it and protect it.
Here are five tips to help you do this:
- Frequently challenge yourself by asking the question “Am I being who I want to be?”
- Be very careful and strategic in how you use social media. Is it supporting your reputation?
- Understand not everyone will like you and that’s ok. If you are being true to who you want to be you will attract the right people and organisations to you.
- What do you want to be known for? Do you have a message and are you known for this?
- Surround yourself with the right people including some trusted advisors who you can ‘check in’ with to gauge how they perceive your reputation. See constant feedback.
And a final tip, which is a big one, is your reputation relevant to what you are trying to achieve, where you want to go and whom you want to surround yourself with?
Answering these questions and ‘doing the work’ will help you build a strong reputation what will enable you to stand out in a busy economy for all the right reasons.