AALL Spectrum

AALL Spectrum | January/February 2016 | Volume 20, Number 3

AALL Spectrum / Published by American Association of Law Libraries

Issue link: https://epubs.aallnet.org/i/628170

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Page 20 of 51

JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2016 | AALL SPECTRUM 19 As librarians operating in a changing and challenging landscape, you must cultivate a brand reputation that elevates others' perception of your ongoing value and contributions. To do so, the following AGILE brand framework may help you and your team elevate your profile and enhance your brand cachet. A ccording to Webster's Dictionary, to be agile means "to be quick and well-coordinated in movement; active; lively; marked by an ability to think quickly; mentally acute or aware." All of these traits are import- ant to our personal or team brand, reputation, and success. Consider the following five attributes and the corre- sponding ideas to help you strengthen your reputation and profile: ¡ ¡ Authenticity ¡ ¡ Generosity ¡ ¡ Intentionality ¡ ¡ Leadership mindedness ¡ ¡ Engaging and energizing Authenticity Whether you provide a product or service, great brands are predicated on their authenticity. In other words, great brands begin by actually delivering what is promised. To cultivate a great personal or team brand, you can elevate your authentic- ity by defining and prioritizing effort around your best strengths. Instead of trying to elevate your reputation by being all things to all people, iden- tify two or three core areas that you'd like to become known for in the next year. is will allow you to focus your actions so that you avoid being spread too thin in how you proactively com- municate and market your services. Start by asking yourself three questions: ¡ ¡ What knowledge, expertise, skills, or solutions do you want to be using the most in the next 12 months? In other words, which issues do you most enjoy solving for others? ¡ ¡ Who has the greatest need for such assistance in the next 12 months? Identify groups of people who would be best served by your skill set. ¡ ¡ How can your knowledge, expertise, skills, or solutions add value to the lives of those groups of people? In other words, what problem can you solve for them by doing what you do best? Consider an example of a library team that excels at competitive intelligence gathering. One group of people that might have a great need for this skill is new partners who want to accelerate their ability to build a book of busi- ness. e problem you can help those partners solve is improving their ability to generate revenue, thereby becoming more successful firm partners. Notice that the problem you solve is different from your skills or expertise, which is merely a means to a desired end. When you translate what you do into a prob- lem that can be solved for someone else, you start to tap into deeper value and enhance how others perceive you. Once you begin to define the areas you want to elevate or market, you can begin to communicate more strategically by creating two messaging tools: your "Quick Pitch" and your "What's New?" 1 2 3 4 AGILE BRAND "CORE FOUR" FOR PREPARATION OBJECTIVES— YOURS AND THEIRS KEY MESSAGES DISCOVERY QUESTIONS OUTCOMES AND NEXT STEPS Image © iStock.com/4x6/jmcreation/ bakhtiar_zein.

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