Why & How to Get Clarity on Your Personal Brand – Even as an FTE

Personal Branding on Multicolor Puzzle.If you’ve always been a full-time employee (FTE), you may never have thought about your personal brand. You’re probably too busy clarifying and supporting your company’s brand – as reflected through its values, differentiators in the marketplace, customers’ needs and emotional connections, graphic representation, etc. However, if you want to pursue a new career or advance in your current organization or industry, you’ll want to be thoughtful and intentional about your personal brand.

Developing your personal brand can prompt you to be proactive versus reactive with your career, inform your career decisions, and cultivate your success.

Here are key questions to ask yourself to help you define your brand:

1) What are your values?

I talk a lot about values because they’re important. Pick your top 5 values. Place these at your workstation so you can be reminded of them every day. Let them guide your decision-making, priorities, and interactions with others at work. For example, if you value truthfulness above all else, how are you promoting and demonstrating a culture of truthfulness in your team? If you notice your values don’t match your company’s values, that probably signifies the company isn’t a good match for you.

2) Whose problem can you solve and why do you care?

Companies often identify specific personas or avatars to guide their research and marketing efforts. If you’re a full-time employee, identifying the “who” can initially be a simpler process. Who do you want to help? What problem do they have that you can help them solve? Why do you care? The answers to these questions can suggest what type of company you work for, what work environment best suits you, and what type of job position you should pursue.

3) What is your unique gift?

(This question is tied to #2.) When are you at your best – fully shining, confident, in the flow, contributing and in the moment? You don’t have to think of it as a skill listed on a personality assessment or corporate performance review. Think of it as your personal, natural talent that you’re using to help others. What type of career and work environment best leverages that gift?

4) How do you want people to feel after interacting with you?

Whether it’s through a presentation, conversation at the water cooler, social media post or meeting, how do you want colleagues and customers to feel after their interaction with you? Valued? Set up for success? Empowered? Ensure your behaviors are supporting your desired outcomes.

5) How does your style support your desired brand?

Like it or not, your personal style communicates something about you. At minimum, it portrays a level of confidence and self-care. What you wear can also affect how you feel. So, be thoughtful about how you’re presenting yourself and how it supports your personal brand.

Let me know which of these questions poses the biggest challenge for you and why. And let’s get a good conversation going!


  1. Morgan,
    This was/is extremely helpful. I am going to work on identifying my brand later this week. It certainly offers perspective on why I left my job as well. Thank you!

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