To become a brand, you’ve got to become relentlessly focused on what you do that adds value. And I promise you can add value to whatever job you’re doing now. Can you do what you do faster and more efficiently? If so, why not document what it would take to do so and offer it to your boss as something all employees might do? Do you initiate new projects on your own and in your spare time? Do you search out ways to save or make your company more money?
You can’t do all that if you’re solely concerned with minimizing risk, respecting the chain of command, and following your job description to the letter. There’s no room for yes-men in this pursuit. Those with the gumption to make their work special will be the ones to establish a thriving brand.
You can’t do meaningful work that makes a difference unless you’re devoted to learning, growing, and stretching your skills. If you want others to redefine what you do and who you are within organizational boundaries, then you have to be able to redefine yourself. That means going above and beyond what’s called for. It means seeing your résumé as a dynamic, changing document every year. It means using your contacts inside and outside your network to deliver each project you’re assigned with inspired performance. Peters calls this the pursuit of WOW in everything you do.