Branding

I launched this blog to combine my impulse for self-expression with an exercise in Building My Personal Brand on the off chance that some nice government agency or company in my native Michigan might want to hire me.* So far, I’m encountering two problems with this.

  1. My creative impulse has been pretty weak and somewhat stymied by the requirements of actual, you know, life.
  2. The  phrase “personal branding” brings to mind the process of branding livestock. I have no chattel to brand, and it’s illegal for me to singe my initials into people without their consent. Or so I am given to understand. So what exactly am I supposed to do?

As far as I can figure, this “personal branding” business is a specific form of self-presentation that’s supposed to provide a sense of one’s personality (or chosen professional persona)  along with the usual proofs of professional competence. Alas, I am not 100% certain which aspects of my personality I ought to be sharing and which are best hidden in an attic somewhere. Perhaps it would be more efficient to simply post the results of all my internet personality quizzes here than to create an executive bio. Who needs a Myers-Briggs type (INTP, BTW) when you can show off your Disney Princess (Belle), your Muppet (varies between Gonzo and Dr. Bunsen Honeydew), or your spirit animal (lizard)?

* Have some disclaimers with that! Nothing I say here constitutes an active search for outside employment by Uncle Sam’s lights. But I do want to relocate to the Mitten after my oldest kid finishes high school.

(On the other hand, why bother moving back to Michigan when it’s #$%@! snowing in the DC area at the end of March? What next, Win Schuler’s Bar Scheeze?)

(Please let there be Win Schuler’s Bar Scheeze.)

Bossypants

Olga Khazan’s GovExec piece “Not All Good Leaders Are Bossy” is perfectly reasonable. I don’t like bosses who are bossy in the sense of overbearing and directive when there’s no call for it. I get how the label “bossy” is disproportionately applied to women who are simply attempting to do their jobs as actual bosses. I may even decide to stop calling my daughter Miss Bossypants when she makes me get out of bed in the morning.

But why’s it gotta be topped with that picture of Sheryl Sandberg? I just reread 1984, so maybe that’s why the picture of la Sandberg exhorting the masses to lean in looked like the prologue to a Two Minutes Hate. Which idealized, benevolent leader-face should play the role of Big Brother? Nominations welcome.