The Land of The Brand
About Janice: Combining her business knowledge garnered from her work with directors and senior executives around the world and her personal, pragmatic wisdom, Janice assists directors and executives with the most sensitive issues that impact the entire life cycle of their board careers. Currently, Janice is a faculty member of the Directors College, sits on the Board of the National Women in Leadership Foundation and is the founder of Board Flight Paths.
We live in a world inundated with brands. Nike, Coke, Starbucks and Apple – each of these brands is highly competitive, global, attention grabbing and impacts our daily lives. It’s a “brand” new world where every successful business has a clear marketing strategy. Whether you are a seasoned director or are looking for your first opportunity to serve, should you factor branding into your career as a director?
The simple answer is “Yes”, but not in the same manner that large, global companies do. Your brand is the overall perception of you as a director or potential director. It’s what is communicated about you and your skills to prospective boards when you aren’t there to talk to them yourself. Your brand is also what sets you apart from the competition and we all know that landing the board position you want is a highly competitive process in today’s market.
Your journey to stand out in “the land of brand” is an important one. With some planning and ground work, having a clear brand will open more opportunities to you, lead you to the best openings and help you build a well-respected reputation. It is worth the time and effort to enter “the land of the brand”. These steps will help you on your journey to define your brand and then develop it.
- Know yourself. It’s important to recognize your personality, strengths and weaknesses and the role these characteristics play in others’ perceptions of you when you are marketing yourself as a director.
- Know your target market and niche. This could be industry sector or functional expertise within a board but determine where you will fit well, what you have to offer and pursue your passions.
- Have a vision, and make smart, strategic decisions. Don’t force yourself into the mold of who others think you should be in order to land the role. Building upon your strengths outlined above, you map out your own journey and stick to it.
- Create a cohesive brand. To pull it all together, all you need is a clear, concise message that communicates what you offer and what you are looking for.
- Build your résumé. Becoming a recognized and “in demand” director doesn’t happen overnight. You need to start small, gain experience and credibility so that your brand has substance.
- Consider director education with The Directors College. As part of the curriculum and networking opportunities.
- Consider a coach, mentor or The Directors College program offerings. Pick a coach or a mentor who has experience with the nomination procedures, can provide objective advice on the specific value you bring to the table and will help you navigate through the process.
While it may sound like a marketing gimmick, building a standout brand that communicates who you are as a director, your strengths, competencies, experiences and values, makes it easier for you and prospective boards to know exactly what you bring to the board. Knowing your own brand allows you to build a board career that not only expresses who you are but can help you to avoid the opportunities that aren’t a good fit. Entering “The Land of the Brand” will enable you to be better equipped on your governance journey so that it will be personally fulfilling and rewarding while adding value to the organizations you serve.
- Module 2: Leadership and Strategy in Vancouver, BC (May 30-1, 2019)
- Module 3: Oversight and Finance in Vancouver, BC (September 12-14, 2019)
- Module 1: Accountability and Change in Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON (September 19-21, 2019)
- Module 2: Leadership and Strategy in Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON (October 3-5, 2019)
- Module 4: Effective Governance Under Complex Circumstances in Vancouver, BC (October 24-26, 2019)