I love Brooklyn.
I tell (what I think are) funny stories about my daughters.
I'm grateful to have transitioned my career from digital marketing to support the advancement of women and girls.
I love talking about topics where I can blend my marketing and coaching expertise (cue the foreshadowing).
I sometimes over-share. People appear to be charmed by it (or at least they tell me they are).
I've gone through some hard shit and I see that as a strength—not a weakness.
I like simple clothing and a clean, clear kitchen counter.
I'm always in the process of connecting two or four or one hundred great people. Friends call it "The Rachel Garrett Explosion."
I believe people can choose to be the best version of themselves (which is usually 10x who they thought they could be) and I will do whatever I can to lovingly push them in that direction.
I dance the line between snark and hope.
This, my friends, is what I would call…my personal brand. Which means, it's not fake or phony. It's me—after doing the work to think about who I am.
Here are some of the most commonly asked questions I get about personal brands to help you get yours up and running:
Why (do I have to do this crap) is a personal brand important?
People are going to form an opinion about who you are no matter what you do. Wouldn't you want to do your best to project the message about you that is based on the core of who you are? When you're clear on your personal brand, you can be more of yourself in conversations—and that authenticity will put you and others at ease, fueling deeper, more meaningful relationships.
How can it help my career?
Your personal brand makes you more memorable—and it helps you stand out from others with similar titles and roles. It also drives people to connect you with opportunities, projects, people and information that are a match with your strengths and priorities. For example, awhile back a New York Times article came out covering various coaching firms who were supporting parents returning to their organizations after Parental Leave. Ten different people texted, emailed and FB messengered this article to me. Supporting working parents is so core to my mission and my message that all of these friends, colleagues and acquaintances felt compelled to share it with me!
What's the first step in creating my personal brand?
Self-acceptance for the win! All of those imperfections you've been trying to hide are personal branding gold. Your imperfections make you more relatable, believable, trustworthy and human. I'm grateful to blend my two careers to tell you, being you is just good marketing, friends.
What are the components of my personal brand?
Get clear on your values, strengths, passions, imperfections and your style or aesthetic. Also—what are the topics that when you talk about them—you are impassioned and alive? This is what I call "Your Truth." You can see my article on What Happens When You Speak Your Truth to better understand how that plays into your brand.
How do I get the word out about my brand?
In everything you do. At a surface level, it's about how you dress, what you post on social channels, how you design your home—all of these things say something about who you are. And then when you go a bit deeper, it's who you're being in the world. Are you living your values in your relationships and in your job? Are you connecting with people and companies who live those values and share in your mission? The people with whom you hang out are as much a reflection of your brand as your latest Instagram post.
How do I know when my brand is working?
When you feel like you're being yourself for a large percentage of the day AND you're getting momentum in your career and relationships—it's working! Isn't it wonderful to get traction when you're simply "being" instead of "trying" all the time? Also, when you begin attracting the kinds of opportunities and people who are in synch with your message and your values, you know you're cracking the code.
Now that I have two decades of professional experience spanning two distinct careers paths, I believe more than ever that my personal brand was a critical component fueling my career success. Building a personal brand is a long-term career approach that assumes you won't always be in this role, at this company or even delivering remotely similar services—but you will always be you. And you—with all your strengths and imperfections—are the person in charge of your success, no matter what you're doing.