A few weeks ago I had the awesome opportunity to moderate a leadership panel that consisted of three professional women, each at the Vice President level and higher. These women were from different ethnic backgrounds, as well as different business functions.
The panel discussion started off with a bang! As I fired question after question at these ladies, they answered with incredible style, grace, wisdom and humility. They transparently opened their life and career journeys up to an eager audience that hung on to every word that was spoken.
As I was nearing the end of my list of questions, I decided to ask a question that would allow the women to leave some final words behind that would make a lasting impression on our audience. I asked, "What's one thing that you know now that you wish you would have known earlier in your life and career?" I could tell by the looks on their faces that they had a lot they wanted and could say as a response to this question.
One of the ladies decided that she was ready to respond to the question. Her answer was not only delivered with finess, but it was incredibly wise and intriguing. She began to explain that she had a career coach that advised her to work on her personal brand and to find "your signature move". Wow...your signature move? I couldn't wait to hear her explain the message behind the golden nugget she just dropped. She went on to say that your signature move is all about your brand and what people know you are good at and that it's important that you find it and communicate it.
I went home that evening really thinking about my "signature move" and couldn't help but equate it to dancing. I kept thinking about my one good move. You know what I mean. That one good dance move that you've perfected and pull out when you've been called to the dance floor to showcase it. Think about the confidence it takes to execute that move every time you do it. You're known for that move. You totally own that move! That's exactly what was meant by "your signature move".
What's that one thing that you do so well that people consistently invite you to meetings, events or project teams for? What about that one skill or talent that when thought of people automatically think or say your name? That's your signature move…your personal brand. That's what keeps you at the forefront of people's minds and will allow you to receive invitations to complement the signature moves of others.
We all have a signature move (or moves). The key is discovering it, perfecting it and communicating it. If you've found your signature move, congratulations! Keep working on it and communicating it. If you haven't found your signature move or are in the process of perfecting it, keep in mind that it should be one that's memorable and will leave people saying, "Wow!" not "Whoa!". Nobody wants to be known for a poorly executed signature move or one that really doesn't fit. That's like trying to do a James Brown move in the middle of the dance floor and you split your pants, along with some other important body parts, in the process. It's just down right wrong!
I encourage you to spend some time thinking about and exploring your skills in pursuit of your signature move. It speaks volumes about who you are and what you bring to the dance.
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