Last evening, I attended a professional development and networking event in Limerick. One of the topics discussed was Personal Branding. The speaker was Gillian Horan of The Pudding branding agency. Before sharing insights on how to build an effective personal brand, Gillian challenged everyone in the room to answer the question ”What is ‘success’ for me?’ She highlighted that it was essential to know the answer to that question before you could do any meaningful work on a personal brand. I believe it’s essential to know the answer to that before you do anything at all in your business.
What do we know about success? Society perpetuates certain images of success. The concept has come to be associated with celebrity or extreme wealth. Yes, there are many successful people who have neither of those things.
The truth is that there is no one definition for success. Success is what you define it to be for you - what you want to do, what you want to have or what you want to be in life. It’s also about knowing what trade-offs you’re prepared to make to get those things.
It’s about your vision, your values and your priorities.
The only judge of your personal success is you. You will know when you’ve done right by yourself. You’ll also know when you haven’t.
For me, part of my definition for success is that I can live a flourishing life on the West Coast of Ireland. Because it’s core to my vision for success, I have great clarity around choices for family, work and career. It’s very easy to eliminate what won’t serve that vision and to focus my attention on what will.
The benefit of knowing what success is for you is clarity of decision-making, freedom from regret and peace-of-mind that you’re running your own race, at your own pace and that you have a sense of where the finish line is.
‘What is success for me?’ When Gillian asked the question last evening, not only did she ask it, she also gave time for people to answer it. Just for each person to do it for themselves by jotting it down on their smartphone or a piece of paper. Many in the room were stumped, muttering ‘gosh, that’s a hard one!’
If that questions stumps you, take time today to answer it.