Although often used interchangeably, there is a simple distinction between the two.
Personal branding represents what is authentic about your personality and character, and reflects the perception of you held by the external world.
Because it’s all about what kind of person you are, your personal brand generally does not change as you progress through your career, from job to job and employer to employer.
Career branding takes the defining process a bit further. Your differentiator in the business world, your career brand defines your unique promise of value in the marketplace – delivering double-digit earnings and revenue growth, turning around floundering business, building top-performing record-breaking teams – whatever specific value you offer your target employers.
Because it meshes personal attributes with business attributes, career branding relies on first defining your personal brand – the passions, strengths, values, and personal characteristics that drive you.
Career branding fuels your career. And make no mistake. Executive career branding in today’s executive job search is required, not optional.
Designed to resonate with your specific target audience, your career brand may change with each career move, to align with marketplace and employer needs and attract a new set of key hiring decision makers.
Naturally then, you can’t begin to build your career brand (and write your resume, other career marketing communications, online profiles, blog/website, and other web pages) without first identifying who your target audience is, what their needs are, and which good-fit strengths and qualities of yours will help them solve their problems.