Publicado en el diario El Comercio (Perú), el 29/11/2011
We were pleasantly surprised in the last few months when several trade associations, universities and companies asked us to help them increase the value of the personal brand and profile of their associates, students and collaborators. This did not happen in the past. Few people thought of a personal brand as a way for others to become aware of the need for self-development nor did they associate personal branding with creating added value. Very few felt the need to help their employees revitalize, improve their employability and present themselves more competitively, maybe from a lack of vision or fearing that they would leave if better positioned to find other opportunities.
There was little investment in soft skills or T-shaped skills, neglecting such basic skills as leadership, adaptability, team work, bilingualism, information technology expertise, self-esteem, critical, creative and innovative thinking, or the capacity for continuous self-learning.
Today, however, leading socially responsible companies have the vision to invest in giving their employees the opportunity to reflect on their career plan and personal brand. And they do so because they know that the more valuable and employable people feel, the better their attitude and commitment, thereby making organizations more productive and the country more competitive.
As our companies now compete globally on an equal footing and the Peru brand is more widely known, we feel increasingly proud of being Peruvian and many are becoming aware of the need to work on their personal brand and profile so as to not fall behind. This is an important cultural change.
What a pleasure it is to help groups of Peruvians to allow themselves to dream and imagine a better future for themselves, their families and their companies. Maybe due to years of unmet needs and low educational levels, many did not learn to look beyond a very short present or to establish goals to become more competitive, not knowing how to achieve them. The concept of a personal brand, together with their passion, effort and dedication in a country that offers more opportunities will hopefully help them raise their professional level and improve their possibilities of attaining a more decent, fair and prosperous life.