How to create a personal mission statement

how to create a personal mission statement

One of the pieces of advice I always come back to, when it comes to my client work is that I want them to “speak in manifestos”. When you work with complex messages, it is always beneficial to be able to go back to “oh that’s what we mean” – or “oh yeah that’s why we’re doing this”. Especially when you work in teams and across management levels. That’s why I always work with different cores and different manifestos with my clients: it simplifies messages and get’s everybody on the same level.

It has been important to me to have a personal mission statement that keeps on reminding me, why I am as I am and choose as I choose. Now, I don’t post my personal mission statement at home on my wall. It lingers in my journals ready for me to look at it and remind me at times where I forget it.

Steps to writing a personal mission statement

– Who inspires you and why?

The people who inspire you can change your perception of things.
I have always been amazed on how much influence the blogs I subscribe to; they have on my life. There’s some of them I have been following for more than ten years and some of them are new. Some of them, I have subscribed to for some time, unsubscribed, and then resubscribed again after some time. If you want to change parts of you, you have to change your input.
I am aware that what I read isn’t only links that are shared by my friends on Twitter, or by the blogs I follow, but it’s also defined by the books I read and the magazines. Without going into details, it’s just important that you know what the different “outlet’s” are giving you.

– Who do you want to be?

I am still at a place where I am just happy to breathe. I am happy that my health is going in the right direction. But I think someway along the way, I don’t want to let my illness define me.  I want to be a writer. I AM a writer. But I want to write more. I want to create more. I want to feel good. To me, it’s more important to ask who you want to be today, than who you want to be 30 years down the line. That’s also an important question to ask, but the world are sometimes a bit too goal-oriented to me.

When you have answered those questions – you’re well on your way to being able to draft a personal mission statement. It’s not an easy process, but if you map down all the important words that keep popping up in your head, you can quickly write something together that looks like a personal mission statement.

Here’s my personal mission statement:
“my mission is to change me for the better and share my process. I will do this with being a true, creative, unique and inspiring person.

I know it’s a bit “airy” but it has to be if my work, my health, and everything else in my life has to fit in there. I do create mission statements around ever “sub-area” such as “health” as well.

ps. My mission statement used to have a different tone to it. It used to be:

“my mission is to change the world for the better and share my process. I will do this with being a true, creative, unique and inspiring person.”

But believing that I change the world by changing myself, I changed it a while back. It became closer to the heart of me.

Get creating rockers!

rock on

 

Could an online friend connection be a pact ?

friend connection pact

I want to propose something to you.
Something radical.
Something that could shift your brand purpose and how others view you.
I want you to see every friend connection as a mutual pact where you not only sign up to see what’s going on in each others life on social media. Where you also sign up to help each other grow creatively.

Where you help each other out.
In my perspective in my part of the pact, an online friend connection is as genuine as an offline. Where online is simply an extension to amplify the offline.

Where we help each other out – and not just click a “like” when your connection posts a picture.

I’m so blessed that I have a very creative network that launch things. They use blood, sweat and tears to build something fantastic.

The smallest thing I can do is to share their work and their efforts.

I’ve started to honor those genuine friend connections and help them launch their babies that mean the world to them. Sometimes by referring their work to others or sharing their updates.

I see it as a way I can serve the world and some of the people closest linked to me.

I see it as brand activism and viral effect  on an underground grassroot level, and that my friends, is one of the best things I know.

Peace out rockers!

Disruptive thinking: brand development before money gain

disruptive thinking brand development

I had a link coming through this morning from one of my facebook friends – about a swedish media exec who where clearly disrupting the media world with her thinking and how she implemented things in her organisation (link is in swedish though, sorry rockers!).

Disruptive thinking leads to disruptive actions, and disruptive actions change organisations.

I am a firm believer that unusualness and disruption by thought are the way to proceed.
Especially since I have been preaching business unusual and disruptive thinking in my brand studio Toothless Tiger, and making it the blueprint of everything I have done.

Creativity and play are also key – life is supposed to be challenging and fun, right? Looking at a challenge from so far away (or up so close) that the challenge changes- right before your eyes. It makes markets appear where no markets where.Disruptive thinking leads to disruptive actions, and disruptive actions change organisations.

If you want to be a leader in your field, if you want to be the one that others looks at because you do things differently, then you need to put those ideas into action.
When I researched for Return on Involvement, I did an interview with the CEO of the Danish office of Innocent Drinks. He told me that he had started to speak at a lot of logistic conferences. I was a bit puzzled by this. Why would he be speaking at logistic conferences? Because Innocent Drinks had taken a stand, that when they gathered the fruits that they used in their smoothies, from all around the world,  they weren’t going to use planes to fly the fruits in. It was against everything that Innocent Drinks stood for. So they decided to have a zero-plane policy. And nobody in the logistic industry thought that could it was possible to do this. But it was. Hence, a logistic rockstar company emerged to inspire the logistical industry, who also with this bold move showed that they put purpose before profit. That their long-term brand development matters more than short-term money gain.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

When I was a kid, I wanted to be a veterinarian. So badly, that I worked for a veterinarian for a week and then found out that I wasn’t going to be a veterinarian because I passed out a couple of times.

Then I wanted to be a rockstar. My vision of an ideal, was to be sitting on a couch and talk about rockn’roll.  And I became an alternative kind of rockstar, because of henrietteweber.com. A business rockn’roll chick/ avantgardist who rocks brands and preaches rockbandism. And who is a brand in her own way.

Sometimes things change when we grow up a bit more. These days all I want is a  for smile from the rockstar in the mirror and a firm believe that “I rock”.

But what else do I dream about being in my lifetime? We grow up a little every day right ? So how do I want every day to feel?  To me it’s very much the same with brands. Branding happens by the minute. It happens from a core of dreams, whether they are business, style, idea or entrepreneurial dreams. Growing up can be a statement.  a silent revolution against what’s going on in the world.

But me… I try to dress myself to match some of this:

colorblocking

Act like this:

thou shall not take shit

Be brave like this:

 

Malala Yousafzai

Feeling so happy being in a world where creativity can amount to this (and you can purchase it!):

kate spade clutch

And when I become more grown up – I will be rocking this:

florence claridge

How about you? Do you know what you want to be when you grow up?

Power to the world! – spice up your traffic to old blog posts

spice up your traffic to old blogposts

You know that scene in the movie Spinal Tap. The one where the guitarist says that he’s the person in the world that can play the loudest guitar, because Spinal Tap’s amplifiers goes up to 11? “One louder, you know when you need that extra push over the cliff “?

If you haven’t seen it, it is right here.

I thought “Hey I would love to amp up to 11 for my old blog posts”.  Or if you’re a mid-90s spice girl fan, giving more power to the world to make your old stuff more accessible and searchable. There lies a huge project ahead for me, spicing up my 658 blog posts here on henrietteweber.com and using them more in the future. It’s in particularly relevant now, since everybody is talking about content marketing being the new big thing. I can’t figure out how content  “marketing” hasn’t been the big thing since… 2003.. cough..sarcasm… cough)

Where am I now and where do I want to be as a brand?

How do my blog posts emphasize on this? When you’ve been having a blog since 2005 things change. I am not the same I was ten years ago, and some of my first blog posts are absolutely cringeworthy for me.

But, here’s some parts of my plan to spice up my traffic to old blogposts

SEO:

So far I have been using the Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress in order to make the blog posts more searchable online. For me, it’s the easiest way to see if the blog posts are SEO friendly. Two other plugins that were recommended to me is the SEO smart links plugin and the insights plugin.

Links:

– Doing different content series (where you make each blog post around a subject a part of an even bigger subject) are something that I have used and consulted around frequently in my work.  Roundups, where you gather great inspiration from around the blogosphere (remember to share the link love though rockers!) and including old blogposts of your own, are super cool too.

I love ps. advice that was written about over on the nectar collective, because it makes so much sense to me to go against automatization and actually remember what you have written about this yourself before.

–  Another great idea is to sum up your categories and tags in “best of” blog posts (or pages even?).  That will also get you cleaning up some of your blog – because whoever checks out tags and categories on their site? Not. me.

– Using old blog posts  for newsletters content. “maybe even have an “oldie but a goodie” column as a part of your semi-weekly newsletter?

– Submit guest blog posts on the subject to different blogs.

Visuals:

Replace old images with new ones and make them pinteresting and make them more shareable. Images are huge these days – so are videos.

Social media:

You could also define what ratio you want old posts vs. new posts on your social media profiles. I try to get a new blog post up on henrietteweber.com every weekday. And my estimate is that an old blog post or two a day wouldn’t hurt on my Facebook page, Twitter, Google + and LinkedIn.

Other places, which are hipper, more underground and startup-like, would be Quora or Somewhere.

Pay for it:

Another option is that you can pay for it. Yes, it’s boring, mainstream and sometimes but it is doable remember to define your call-to-action clearly though, which I always end up setting as a newsletter subscription. You can categorize your blog posts as series around given subjects  and do an Adwords or Facebook campaign around those series.

rock on

 

Is purpose the best currency ?

 

brand activism before purpose before profitWe do like cold hard facts right in business right? More than branding. More than purpose. it’s so interesting that we, have this urge to collect a lot of data to find security in that our actions are the right ones. Then when the data is collected – we forget about it, or write a strategy around it and put that strategy in a drawer.

I am very passionate about the environment and sustainability. Mostly I’ve previously expressed this passion by giving 20% of my time to be one of the editors of the amazing-now-no-longer-live “green girls global” blog.  In my writing and speaking gigs this passion came as an outcry for people to try and put purpose before profit (and if that was completely not doable, they should at least level purpose and profit).

Back in November a report came out from CDP where they had tracked 500 companies throughout 3 years and the results where remarkable: Companies planning for climate change are more profitable, have higher returns and are more stabile.

You can read the full report here. Via Co.EXIST

From a branding perspective, a report like this can move mountains for the individual company. Purpose before profit is really actions defining who you are as a brand. Even though it hasn’t been updated for a couple of years, I was a huge fan of Greenpeace’s guide to greener electronics. I thought it was so important work, especially mapping out what action electronics companies where doing to become greener – and giving consumers a clearer view on how green their electronics are.

Purpose before profit works – my awesome business rockers! So get those awesome world-changing projects going, no matter what field or company you’re working for. The universe will be all woo-woo like and reward you for your efforts to do good!

rock on henriette weber

 

Have you defined your social media ethics?

social-media-ethics

Social media ethics is something that is left untouched by a lot of people on the internet. It’s really important and something we should have a conversation about. After all, it’s defines our behaviour, how people see us, or if you’re into business talk: your personal brand. Ethics are not what you preach, but what you practice.

Here’s some social media ethics that I think could make the world a better and more loving place if we all used them:

“Via”

I hate it when I have found something good and then somebody else links to it or shares it without mentioning where they got it. That’s why I always put in a “via” – the internet and the people on it love links – so spread the love!

Sharing pictures on blogs

If I use a picture on my blog – I mention where I got it. Social media ethics FTW! – spread the link love rockers!  Most people don’t mind that you’re using their stuff if you tell the world where you got it. Sometimes I find a drop dead gorgeous picture, which I want to use in a presentation for a keynote.  If a picture is protected by copyright, I ask the person if it’s ok that I use it. Haven’t gotten a no yet on that account.

Discussions

Remember that what’s said on social media is often very black and white. You can’t be in between. Just keep that in mind when you discuss. My all time worst discussions are political discussions. There’s just no way to tell people to respect that people have another opinion than you. On the internet, we speak in what I call our “ultimate truth”. Most times these discussions are text-based so either you agree (and tell it to the world). Strongly disagree (and tell it to the world). But if you’re indifferent about something you often just browse on through the emails or news feeds. That’s why it comes out like ultimatums. Keep that in mind.

Invites

One of the things that really gets to me, is people who keep adding me to groups without me approving it. I know you can do that on Facebook, and there’s no way (yet) that you can block people from doing it (you can with “event invites”, apps and pages). To me it seems like a hole in permission marketing that some people are using to their  advantage. Adding people again and again to new groups, creates more bad- than goodwill in my opinion, so watch that invite button.

People who share their content everywhere

You know those people who share everything they create into groups just because they can? It reminds me of a link baiting scheme. Making the rounds when you need traffic for your website, or you have a particular call-to-action you want to push.  It is a big mistake to do this on a continuos basis. Especially if you’re not contributing in the group apart from doing your seeding each time you have something you need to “launch”.

I do it myself though, on my channels where people have actively signed up to hear what I have to say. But in my point of view there’s a big difference between sharing on your social media “embassies” and then sharing stuff in groups where people haven’t signed up to get your… Well – should we say.. close-to-spam?  As a moderator of several groups on the internet, over-sharing is a problem. There’s a lot of discussions going on about whether or not it should be “allowed” if the content you’re sharing is of value to the people in the group.

I say nay. Not if it’s simply a part of a scheme. I think everybody owes to themselves to listen to their gut feeling whether or not they should be sharing their oh-so-valuable content. If it’s something you’re over the top about and you simply can’t resist because it’s that good – go for it!

I would love to give a shout-out to moderators of groups. Most of you are doing a great job. If you have people who are unhappy with you, because you’re keeping a close eye on how much people share (or spam), no worries. Mention to them that you’re watching their back and making sure that people don’t see them as “that person” who continuously push their own content for other people to buy. You make sure they’re not crossing the fine line between “valuable input” and “spammer” in a matter of updates. Or the fine line from goodwill around your brand to bad will.

 

rock on henriette weber

 

 

 

That old “I should totally build a brand around this idea” feeling

I think it’s sad that people are so in doubt about what kind of personal or corporate brand they can be. What kind of brand is aligned with them. A brand is something that should be closely aligned with your identity or personality.

I totally get where you’re coming from. When I read some of my first stuff on branding I thought it was sky-high and I couldn’t but a finger on anything I could actually use it for. But then slowly I switched into action gear and started to create stuff around me that I thought was aligned with my personality and personal brand. Suddently I didn’t only see a blank canvas (my blog) I saw a million creative ways I could make a living being myself and giving my practical and curly inspiration to the world.

Listen rockers! it starts out with one thing: Great ideas! If you’re thinking about your branding and you suddenly come up with something that you, yourself think is a great idea, then it’s something that’s worth considering. If you get the “I should totally build something around this idea” feeling.  There’s probably an aspect of that idea that is aligned with you and what personal or even corporate brand you can have.

Let’s add all these great ideas and actions!

Inner business bliss: Feeling bad ass much ?

feeling bad ass much

I really like to measure stuff – internally and externally around my business and me as a business-owner. And one of the things I often end up looking at, internally – is how bad ass i feel as an entrepreneur.

Bad ass – to me, is to show confidence in everything I do. A personal goal of mine is to make sure that it’s there most of the time. I could call it self-confidence in your worklife, but bad ass-ness makes more sense to me. And let’s face it, sometimes you’re doing amazing and everything is cool -you feel bad ass but other times not so much. Last night I got all kinds of downs professionally because I don’t feel like Im writing enough.

I know. To some people I am probably doing a lot, I am running a consultancy, a startup and I want to be champion of all trades so I want to write more books as well. Mostly to honor my creativity.  But to be honest, I didn’t feel that bad ass last night.

When that happens: I do two things: Get my action into gear and start doing more of the things that I feel like I’m missing out of – like writing. And then I go back and think about that I responsible for my own happiness. Not my dog, not my clients, not the husband or the daughter. But just me. If there’s something I don’t like – I need to get smarter around it and change it. Buy some books. Spend more time reading and producing at night instead of watching Orange is the new black with the man. I should get a mentor in some field or hire somebody to help me out.  I should smarten up and get going. But I feel like these days, that one of the things I really LOVE – which is those things that are super important for the long-term success of my business life – like writing books, is something I keep postponing because there’s a lot of other stuff to do. So I need to start delegating to other people so I can feel bad ass again.

Visiting RICE – the identity of a caring colourful happyness company

Identity rockers here’s something for you:

A couple of weeks back I visited RICE.

In my humble opinion one of the top 5 danish design companies with the coolest identity. I was so lucky that I got to see their colorful HeadQuarters in Odense.

I hi-jacked their founder and creative director Charlotte Hedeman Gueniau for an interview. I had a hidden agenda, and wanted to talk to her about the RICE identity,  and the red thread in everything they do.

Here is what came out of it (warning- turn the sound up – it didn’t come out that well):

What’s so special about the RICE identity: They have build it from their own uncompromisable core.

And I am crazy about that. Their tagline is “people care- we care”. And they mean it (as you will also see in the video above).  Their whole warehouse was filled with how Rice is making a difference for people, in the crazy world of design.

I know for a fact, through my work with my awesome cool clients , that  building from the core is what you need to do.  Especially if you want to build more and more digital branding around you using different platforms: social media, apps, community – you name it.

RICE stands out so strong because the company actually gives you something to believe in (instead of just doing awesome colourful products). It gives them a substance and a coolness that often are missed in the business world,  and that’s why I adore them so. Are you inspired to do more about your identity? I am. Also I have had the strangest urge to  put colours everywhere after my visit.
In addition to the video and me geeking around their identity

Charlotte Hedeman Gueniau has a wonderful book coming out soon entitled “Happy Home: Everyday Magic for a colourful home” – about colors and happyness, can’t wait to see it in my bookshelf! here’s a sneakpeak:

the identity of a colourful company, now in book format

For more of the colourful universe of Charlotte Gueniau you have to check out her Pinterest and the RICE blog.

Can’t help but thinking of the Rolling Stones song ” she’s a rainbow”.

Charlotte for sure is putting colours everywhere, and if anybody would ever ask me if I had met a rainbow, I would say: Sure! she runs a colourful company called RICE in Odense Denmark and she’s taking over the world.