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Personal Branding

When Personal and Corporate Brands Collide



Solveig Whittle put me on to this article this morning and I think it’s a very relevant one. In this Sensei Blogs blog post, Sam Fiorella writes about the clash between personal and corporate brands and how times are changing. As is many times the case, the large corporate structure can be slow to react and take notice of emerging trends and opportunities. That’s not always the case, but it is in this story. Read the full article here.

However, on the day of the award ceremony, 99.7 The River’s parent company issued a cease and desist letter to the award committee demanding they change the nomination and award from Mr. Reynold’s name to that of the radio station. Upon his return to work after accepting the re-named award, Mr. Reynolds was terminated “with just cause” and little other information  Read more here.

Solveig definitely has her pulse on personal branding and social media. For more from her, check out her blog and follower her on Twitter at @shadesofsolveig.

Personal Branding Tip: Should My Bio Be In 1st or 3rd Perspective?

The Question - Should I write my bio from the 1st or 3rd perspective?

The Simple Solution - Write Both

  • 160 character

  • One sentence

  • 100 words

  • 250 words (1st person)

  • 250 words (3rd person)

The Three Guiding Principles

  1. What is the message I’m trying to deliver?

  2. To whom am I delivering this message?

  3. Through which media am I delivering this message?

However, these are just guidelines, not hard rules, so do whatever feels right to you. What do you think? Let me know in the comments below or on twitter at @michaelbmaine. Until next time…peace.

Press Release: Personal Branding Workshop


Menrva Labs Founder Michael B. Maine Offers Free Personal Branding Workshops In Downtown Seattle

Seattle, WA - April 2, 2012 - In order to help connect people with their passions, appropriate networks, employment opportunities, and greater happiness, Michael B. Maine, founder of Menrva Labs, is developing a free personal branding workshop series that is open to the public. The workshops will be held monthly beginning April 16, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. at One Union Square. They are designed to engage attendees to identify their strengths, passions, and essence to empower them to acknowledge their true value proposition.

The turn of our economy caused a tremendous number of people to find themselves unemployed. The strong competition within the job market has made many job seekers more deliberately evaluate the value they offer to an organization and the people around them. With job and financial security now in question, people have discovered that being laid off, while never a pleasant experience, may have actually saved them from perpetual dissatisfaction by allowing them to pursue endeavors they are more passionate about.

“In an age,” says Angie Jordan (MBA Candidate, 2013), “where networking is becoming the primary way in which business is done, I think it is critical to be able to easily and confidently speak about one’s personal value and how that can benefit others.  I look forward to refining my ability to do that at this workshop!”

Maine says, “The idea is that each person should leave each session with a better understanding of who they are and what they have to offer, as well as the tools and mastery of those tools to effectively deliver that message.” When asked why the workshops are free he states, “I never want access to be an issue.”

Michael B. Maine created Menrva Labs in 2009 with the mission to promote social change by increasing social awareness. Menrva Labs provides socially conscious marketing services to individuals, small businesses, and non-profit organizations.



Michael B. Maine

Ph: 214.699.1758

Introduction of the Menrva Labs Personal Branding Workshop Series


Conference Room at Union Square One

I am deeply honored and excited by the response to the launch of my personal branding workshop series. What has been a hope and dream for the past year is officially becoming a reality on Monday, April 16, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. PST at Union One Square in Seattle, WA. This workshop series is intended to bridge the gap between the discourse around “How To Promote Yourself” and “How To Find Yourself.” Apparently there is a need for this type of stuff (The event sold out before I had time to promote it).

They will take place monthly (3 months on; 1 month off) every third Monday. They are designed to be cohesive enough that you can gain by completing the series, yet modular enough that you won’t be lost if you attend only one. More details and specifics are to come. I’m also working on building a live online version, a pre-recorded webinar version, and a breakfast/luncheon series.


More free stuff?

Currently, the on-site workshops are free to attend. If you’ve read any of my previous work, you’ve probably noticed that I like to give stuff away. Why would I do this? Why would I be willing to put in the time needed to research these topics, find out what people want and need, write the documentation, print the materials, buy the food, etc. and give it away? First and foremost, I want to ensure that this type of opportunity is not denied to anyone who wants access. I hope to work with marginalized populations who are typically prevented from nourishing network opportunities, education, and the confidence needed to develop their dreams. Secondly, I love learning. One of the best ways to make things stick is by teaching it. Plus, I’ll learn just as much from the people in attendance. Thirdly, when you do good things, you tend to be around good people. I’ve already felt enriched with the community of people who are working to effect positive change out there where they are.

Financial compensation will come in the form of personalized consultations, speaking arrangements, etc. So, professionally, this has the potential to be just as good for me as for anybody looking to polish their resume. At the end of the day, I want to do something that I can feel good about.

If you’d like to join the conversation, stay informed, and join the community please like the Facebook Page and follow @michaelbmaine and @menrvalabs on Twitter. You can also sign up for the Menrva Labs newsletter here.


Special Thanks

Before I conclude this blog post, I’d like to extend my huge, heart-felt appreciation for some of the people who helped make this possible:

Fortunato Vega—Thank you for being so gracious as to offer the venue at no charge so that I can afford to offer these events for free.

Mary Kay Chess—You have been a tremendously positive force in my world these past few months. Thank you for teaching me that it’s okay to just be.

Interviewees—To everyone I’ve ever interviewed for Menrva Labs. Thank you for re-inspiring me with each and every one of your stories. It’s people like you that remind me of the power we each hold to be the change we want to see in the world.