All Posts Tagged Tag: ‘self-confidence’

Setting Our Own Brand Value and Self Worth

Just the other day I was on an airplane again. I fly all the time. On every flight I find myself caring too much about what the other passengers think of me. How do I do it? Well, it shows up in every aspect of my “being”- from what I eat and drink on the flight to what I read or write on the plane.

It’s just crazy, right? And don’t judge me- you know you do it, too. You just don’t want to admit it because you don’t want us to value you less.

Some times I think I spend more time thinking about this stuff than about myself and how I feel when I’m on the plane. And this is from someone who develops other peoples’ brands for a living. I’m fully self-aware and know the impact of us not setting our own self-worth and value.

Do you ever wonder why we all care so much about what others think about us?

It can’t be self-preservation. Frankly, all the energy I expend on making sure I look “good” to others on the plane is just exhausting. It does nothing to make me feel better to try so hard. If anything, it is “anti” self-preservation.

It also can’t be because I really care about what others think of me. I’m likely never going to see any of those people again once I step off the plane.

Yet, I fall for ego’s trick, too—even on airplanes with people I have never met and will never meet again.

So the real inquiry is why do we allow others to set our value for us? Why is it that we can’t have a high enough self-worth that it doesn’t really matter what others think of us?

Why do we allow others to set our self-worth and set our value?

The real reason is that we are so afraid to look deep inside because we may discover that we are loveable and great. If we look inside, we may find ourselves worthy of love- our own love and that of others. If we did, then what anyone else thinks of us would not matter- we would get to set our own value and worth.  That’s very liberating, not to mention not so exhausting. That’s also an attractive brand.

What does this mean for you? Stop and consider:

  • How often do you allow what others think of you to matter more than what you want to think of yourself? Be honest with yourself.
  • Why do you do it?
  • Where is one place in your life experience and activities that you could allow yourself to be “free” and set your own value/worth and brand?
  • What if you just didn’t care what others thought of you- that includes your friends, family, colleagues and strangers? I guarantee you that you would be happier AND more productive. You would have a stronger sense of self, making you more attractive to others.

Was this helpful? If so, please share the blog and help others, too.  

Got questions? Feel free to email me directly: katy (at)

The Cost To Your Brand: Customer Acquisition and Customer Support

1358856_10905934The longer I live, the more I think about what it really means to support others and be of service to them. Where along the way do we lose that magic touch of support and service to others?

I think about this topic more lately because of the larger number of service providers we hire at work. It seems like we pay so many companies monthly for something. The latest hire really made me laugh.

This company gave a 14-day free trial offer so I could test out their software. I found myself scrambling like a maniac to really use and implement their software and test it fast. Why?

My past experiences with similar vendors have conditioned me to believe that companies will give me good service as long as I’m not a client yet. In other words, while they are wooing me in the “dating” phase, they’ll give good support and answer my questions. Once I pay up, they stick me in line with all the other customers who need support and then I won’t be able to get help with their product anymore. Even if me and my company have paid a premium to use their service.

Don’t believe me? Here’s a real life example we’ve actually tested out.

We evaluated Demand Force, a company we have used. Here are the results:

It took Demand Force ten seconds to answer sales calls- when they thought we were prospective clients wanting to buy their service. In contrast…

We were on hold 29 minutes when we became a client and had a question regarding their service and product.

Do you see a problem? I do. Does it now make sense why I was scrambling to see if I really liked my potential new vendor while they were wooing us? Sadly, yes.

What does this mean for you? Stop and think for yourself:

If you are in the role of working for one of these types of organizations:

  1. what kind of pre and post acquisition support do you offer clients? If it differs, by how much and why?
  2. What does the difference in treatment do for your overall corporate/business brand? Does your target audience get a clear and consistent brand message? Do they really get to know your company values this way?

If you are an individual working on your own brand:

  1. what kind of support do you offer others?
  2. Do you offer consistent support to those you serve?
  3. Or does your level of support vary? If so, how and why? 

How To Work Your Brand Backwards

I used to identify myself with my job and career as a lawyer.  Whenever anyone asked me, “who are you?” my response would start with “I’m a lawyer”.  It was really unhealthy.  Worse was that I had no self-awareness of what I was doing to my self-confidence, not to mention my brand. That was so long ago.

Fast forward 15 years and an entirely new career.  I LOVE and absolutely have deep passion for what I do for a living. I know it is a natural expression of my talents and of who I am.  The expert branding advice I give comes with ease and grace.

Ironically, today I don’t define myself as my career and job.  I had to work my brand backwards to get here.


Once I retired from the practice of securities law, I literally spent two years figuring out just who I was and what I was naturally good doing for myself and for others.  It was a true (and often painful) exploration of the best of “ME” with no “back” button.  It was so worth it to find my brand and my self-confidence.

Once I unearthed my brand, I then worked backwards to find out what would be a good work environment and a good fit for my natural talents and abilities.

It was so much easier to do this than what I find most of us try to do instead. Here’s what I hear all the time:

“If I just find a great new career and/or job, then I’ll be happy and can work on my own brand”.


You first have to figure out who you are and what you can naturally tap into as your ability and skill set and zest for life in helping others. From there, and only there, can you then move on to create a career or job or business that reflects your natural abilities and love for doing so for others.  That is your brand.

What does this mean for you?  Stop and consider:

  • What is that one thing you do every day that comes so very naturally to you?
  • What do others compliment you most on?
  • What is “it” that you are curious about in this world?
  • What activity makes you the happiest?
  • Now, how can you take these answers and channel them into a purpose and action that comes with ease, grace and benefits others?

Who’s The Greatest?


There are many days when I’m so proud of myself. I pinch myself at the thought that I get to do such great work and be of service to so many awesome professionals.

Yet, I’m careful not to be too over the top about it.   I don’t want to make others feel bad or seem snooty. And that’s coming from me- the one who teaches this stuff!

After all, it’s important to be humble. Or is it?

In the world of brand development, it is important to self-promote in a healthy way so others notice you. The problem is that human nature and our egos dictate that we stay humble and not “bragg” too much.

However, we end up being the best kept secret, our self-confidence low and our dreams, just a little bit out of reach- always. This is all because we couldn’t self promote well.

On the passing of Muhammad Ali, I kept going back to one thing: his phrase, “I’m the greatest”.

Who do you think was the first person to say Ali was the greatest? Do you really think it was someone other than him?

It was often said that Ali started that phrase, “owned” it and then others believed him, too. The rest is history.

What does this mean for you?

  • Do you own your greatness? If not, why?
  • How will you self-promote in a healthy way and stay humble?

After all, perception is reality. If you believe it, utter it, it will become your reality and others will believe it, too.


Dramatic or Pragmatic? What’s Your Brand?


When I was a kid, I had a lot of drama. I mean I could have won an Oscar weekly for my brilliant portrayal of a small, cute, middle-eastern, toothless (yes, I lost my teeth early and didn’t get them until much later) girl,  who had it going on!

As I grew up and evolved out of the practice of law, I realized the drama in my life had to go, too.  After all, the drama wasn’t adding more to my brand. It was in fact, detracting from it. Letting go of my drama was not easy.  I didn’t realize how much my drama was who I was “being” until I was letting it go.  I tried to look at it like I was shedding a coat that no longer fit me. The trouble was, it didn’t feel like I was shedding a coat that I no longer wanted.   It felt like I was being stripped of my identity and my comfort zone.

How did I do it?  Well, like all things in brand development, it required self-awareness.  I had to stop and really look at each moment in my life. I had to ask myself if I was being genuine and coming from the heart or had an ulterior motive that required me to force others to “look at me”.

What I was left with when I shed much of my drama (I am always working on being completely drama-free) was FREEDOM.  I no longer felt the need to huff and puff so much at others and at my own life. This meant I didn’t blame others (to their face or under my breath) for my life and what was wrong with me.  I wasn’t a victim anymore.

Not being a victim allows me to be pragmatic.  Things that happen in my life don’t hurt so much anymore.  When someone says something to me or does something “mean” to me, I’m ok with it.  I check the drama at the door and look at the situation pragmatically.  I say to myself, “Isn’t that interesting?” instead of “how dare you?” I’ve come to realize these types of situations aren’t really about me, but about the other person’s outlook on life and people.

Being pragmatic leaves me with a great brand: I’m more self-confident, happy and compassionate.

So what does this mean for you?  Stop and ask yourself:

  • How much drama do you choose to have in your life? Why?
  • If you could change one view point you have on others, or on yourself, what would it be and how would it make your life more drama-free?
  • Who is the most pragmatic person  you know and what about them works for you? How can you do this for yourself?
  • How would your brand change if you had less drama in your life and instead had a more pragmatic outlook?
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First, Know Yourself So You Know What To Market.