Being authentic in your brand and leadership, and why it matters

Being authentic in your brand and leadership, and why it matters

One of the important aspects of being a leader in today’s workplace has to do with how you authentically present yourself. Check out how RMIT prepares students to professionally brand themselves.

For the first time in our era, the workplace is seeing 4-5 generations working in the same offices and organisations. This is important, because since these groups are asked to work and collaborate together, finding compromises and comprehension requires new levels of sensitivity and workplace balance. One of the ways that we can quickly understand those we work with, and for them to understand us, is to utilise a personal brand to distinguish oneself and align one’s values and passion.

Recently, Dr. Rajeev Chib, COO of Client and Business Development at Citi Bank Asia, visited RMIT Vietnam where he taught the four-day intensive course on Personal Branding and Authentic Leadership. This course is an elective in RMIT’s MBA Leadership minor, as well as is offered to MIB students as a general elective. 

Dr. Chib believes that with the knowledge of an individual’s personal branding certain tensions or impasses can be circumvented or avoided entirely. 
Dr. Chib began his class with an early SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, obstacles, threats) self-assessment exercise.  Although SWOT is generally used by businesses, it is equally as effective as a personal analysis tool. Dr. Chib states that “it becomes an ‘A HA’ moment for the students, utilising SWOT to apply to authenticity and branding.”

Dr. Rajeev Chib at RMIT Vietnam Dr. Rajeev Chib at RMIT Vietnam

As a visual teacher, Dr. Chib confides that he spends a “painful amount of time” curating relevant video content. His favourite case study is a video excerpt from the 1957 black and white classic ‘12 Angry Men.’ He has the class target 5 or 6 key questions about authenticity and the style that was used by different characters, and what tensions were built as a result. “It brings out the aspects of collaboration and indirect leadership,” Dr. Chib states, “and even though everyone begins on a level playing field in the movie, by the end of the excerpt, it becomes clear that certain individuals have unique skillsets.”

One of the other main focuses during the course is on networking. “Don't only network when you are looking for a job and don't only attend events that have big shots. Networking is something that you do every day, maybe sometimes without even knowing it,” Dr Chib states. “Thus, the societal rules of basic human decency apply to networking as they should in your daily life. Be inquisitive, thank people for their time, and leave a good impression. Most of how I was able to move from job to job was thanks to my internal connections.” Dr. Chib challenges his students to also use technology, innovative media and digital platforms to their advantage. He asks them how they can use these methods to enhance their personal branding and leadership styles.  

For a deeper investigation into how SWOT analysis can be used at the individual level to promote growth please read this article.


Related News