On the 15th of November 2017 I delivered a guest lecture to the students following a Master of Arts program in International Economic Relations at the most prestigious University in Romania, the Bucharest University of Economic Studies. As a guest of Professor Andreea Paul (former deputy in the Romanian Parliament and President of the INACO think-tank), I have been invited to discuss the implications of personal branding for future diplomats and aspiring corporate managers.
Professor Andreea Paul has always been interested in ensuring that students are prepared to meet the requirements of the future. I have met the distinguished Professor at a conference where we have both been speakers and we have both discussed about the future. Having a strong personal brand herself, she has thoroughly understood the importance of a well-crafted personal brand for the future generations.
Subsequently, my lecture addressed the questions “what is a personal brand?”, “why is it crucial to have one?” and “how to build a personal brand that will ensure your professional success?”
Key ideas included:
Branding the public figure, the future diplomat or politician requires a different set of skills and a complex approach. The process needs to be started as early in life as possible and should develop as the person does. The person must embody the brand and rarely is permitted to act outside his or her brand guidelines. The personal brand must be evident in everything the person says, condemns or wears. In such a case, the branding process needs to go hand-in-hand with personal and intellectual development.
Branding the future corporate manager is often an equally intricate process. In the future, corporations and companies will focus much more on screening the personal brands of employees. People whose personal brands will be dissimilar with the company brand will not be promoted nor hired as easily. A well-crafted personal brand makes a person appear as a legitimate candidate for the employer or for the supervisor. Moreover, properly branded managers will do a much better job at attracting the workforce.
The developments in technology create the perfect context for personal branding. On the one hand, the world is interconnected and everybody can create a working relationship with anyone from all over the world, provided their brand permits it. On the other hand, it is claimed that by 2030 more than 2 billion jobs will disappear. Which entails that the competition will be fierce for those jobs that cannot be performed by artificial intelligence. It is clear then, that the people who have well-crafted personal brands will also have a secure future ahead of them.
Whilst the field of branding is an intricate one because it encompasses a large spectrum of other domains such as anthropology, sociology, psychology, sales, leadership, sensorial experience as well as a visionary approach, it is essential to educate the next generations in this international subject that often makes the entire difference to their careers.
My guest lecture has been preceded by a speech held by former state secretary, Irina Alexe, on the protection of personal data, another topic of crucial importance for the next generation.