Meetings are forums and events in which perceptions are built up and broken. Every meeting is different – also regularly and frequently.
Sometimes they are predictable and standard operating procedures, sometimes they are promising yet strained.
Given how much time we spend in meetings, every meeting is an opportunity to make or break our personal brand. How we show ourselves, what role we play, where we sit, and what we contribute can dramatically increase or damage our reputation.
There are five key roles we can play in meetings, and we generally fall into one of these categories regardless of the type of meeting.
- Challenger to the status quo
- Proponents of the point of view of others
- Defensive on behalf of others
- Constructive brainstormer or problem solver
- Summary of thoughts
Take a look at your value proposition and ask yourself the following questions:
- Which of these roles am I currently playing? And how does it work for me?
- What role could I play better and how does that contribute to my brand?
- What do I have to do differently to play this role?
- And what do I have to do more consistently?
Some additional ideas to consider when implementing your personal brand in meetings include:
- Where you sit around the table – If you sit in the middle, a collaboration message will be sent while the table leader controls the controls.
- How to get involved when you first step in – Sit and look at your smartphone or introduce yourself and talk to other participants.
- When you speak – Do you speak, advocate and express professional opinions on the topics that matter most to you and your brand? Do you speak and fight for anything? Or do you remain a silent observer?
Get a quick reality check from someone you trust. Do not rely solely on your own perceptions, opinions, and ideas to answer these questions. Some of our most valuable information comes from the perspective of others.