Fierce eats Fleek for breakfast.

This is a conversation that could be summarized as "result drive behavior". In a multimedia world that is largely driven by followers, likes, retweets, and shares, we have a tendency to get way caught up in the wrong things when it comes to managing our careers. We measure our brand and marketability to the numbers but completely lose sight of real engagement and target audience.

The definition "extremely good, attractive, stylish" truly defines the fleeting nature and temporary sense of talent when in fact, it's just a snapshot in time of surface popularity. Fleek is NOT substance, it's surface. We focus on Fleek when we should be focused on Fierce!

When I work with TalentBlvd clients we start by building the foundation of their personal brand. Usually this is either an invention focused on differentiators or a re-invention by leveraging the opportunity of time and change (role, setting, skills). "Fleek" is clearly ONE of the differentiators but it can never be THE differentiator. When fleek is the differentiator, it will eventually turn to fleet(ing) and can be over as quickly as it started. Recall that "stylish" is in the definition and clearly styles by nature are always changing and we ARE NOT going to wait until you come back in style like bell bottoms and duck shoes.

When working with multimedia talent, heck, even when working with business executives, I focus on building 'fierce' brands. It needs to be strong, focused, intense, powerful, aggressive and definitely not fleeting and stylish.

How you can approach building your own fierce brand? That's a process that takes time, resources, and commitment to stay the course. The first step? You must identify what your brand is, what is your brand's persona? I take my clients through a brand build process that has three components:

  1. Passion and Skills

  2. Differentiators and Value Proposition

  3. Audience and Targets

Where does the hardest work and biggest challenge occur? The differentiators and value propositions. We are simply not good at being able to step back and look objectively at what our personal differentiators are and how they create value for our audience. It is this component of the three that requires a coach or manager. Agents and advocates will not help here because they are largely focused on selling your 'fleek'. The discipline to close your eyes and ears to what you want to see/hear and open them to what you need to see/hear is your call and the hardest, but most rewarding, thing you can do for your career today!

see more than 80 articles and posts on talent management and career development online at: Mike McNamara

About Mike McNamara:

Mike has held C-Suite, Executive and Senior Sales, Marketing, Business Development, and General Management roles with Equifax, Cox Enterprises, WW Grainger, and Federal-Mogul Corporation. Mike has led sales, service and operations organizations of over 1,500 associates and accountable for P&L responsibility in excess of $250M.

Dedicated to giving back, Mike formed The MBAR Group in 2009 with the sole intent of providing pro bono career and business consulting services. Today, as Founder/CEO of TalentBlvd he coaches a number of high profile media personalities as well as holding advisory board positions guiding a number of multimedia and small business startups including dot com's TalentBlvd and TurnedUpHere.

Mike earned his MBA from the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University and also holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Michigan State University. He is a past chapter President of the American Marketing Association. Mike and family split time between their adopted state of Missouri and family home in NW Michigan where their philanthropic causes include The Kingdom House - St Louis, BACN in Benzonia, MI., and Samaritan’s Purse, Boone NC.

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