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The Champion Forum Podcast

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TCF024: Becoming the Obvious Choice Part 2

Thank you for listening to The Champion Forum Podcast with Jeff Hancher! Who you ARE matters just as much as what you DO. If you want to get noticed at the highest levels, you need to develop a reputation and personal brand that causes other people to trust you and want to work with you.

Last week we talked about the importance of strengthening your communication skills, networking, and keeping your word. This week, Jeff will discuss the importance of asking questions, maintaining your appearance, speaking publicly, being authentic, and taking on additional assignments.


  1. Try to get an agenda for the meeting before you arrive.

  2. Dedicate time to research and prepare for the meeting so that you will have a valuable perspective to contribute.

  3. Come up with an unusual question that sheds light on the subject and causes healthy discussion.

  4. Your activity, or lack of activity, in a meeting will determine the way that other people see you and can affect your future with the company.

Q: How often do you speak up in meetings? What keeps you from being more vocal? How do you view people in your meetings who do speak up? What do you think about people who do not? Which of these images matches more with the brand that you want to create?


  • What you wear matters.

  • Dress in a way that suits your industry and presents the best version of yourself.

  • You cannot go wrong with being well-groomed.

  • A brand of being sloppy, or even looking ‘good enough,’ is not one that is helping you to stand out from your peers.

Q: How important do you think the way you look is in creating a first impression? Do you believe you can ever overcome a bad first impression? Why or why not? Have you ever thought someone looked too good? If so, what effect did it have on your opinion of them?


  • Helps you learn a new, valuable skill.

  • Gives you a chance to show your personal brand to more people.



  • Expands your skill set and your understanding of the company.

  • Shows new people your skills, personal brand, and reliability.

Application Activities

  1. Evaluate your wardrobe. Check your work clothes and evaluate whether or not they are compatible with the personal brand you want to create. Donate clothes that don’t fit or are outdated. Throw away any clothes with stains or holes, even if you think other people can see them. Develop a pattern of updating your wardrobe once a quarter or once a month, depending on your needs. As you keep your wardrobe updated and remove damaged items, you will ensure that you are presenting yourself well.

  2. Brainstorm a list of thought-provoking questions that you can use during a meeting. To create a good list of questions, avoid using “yes” or “no” questions, avoid asking “where or when” questions, and avoid asking questions that have already been answered. The best questions will star with “how” or “why” and will often challenge a generally accepted point of view. The point is not to disrupt the meeting or derail the plan. Your goal is to help other members of the team consider potential blindspots and to fully understand the impact of their decisions. You could also ask questions that will highlight unexpected or overlooked benefits. When you brainstorm some questions or question formats before the meeting, you will more easily be able to contribute and focus on the meeting.

  3. If you want to be able to dedicate time to building your personal brand by using the strategies Jeff presents in this two-part series, you have to take control of your schedule. Look at your schedule for the week and consider how you block your time. Do you let other people dictate your schedule? Are you pulled into different directions by your coworkers, employees, and supervisor? Or, do you schedule time to deal with potential distractions and emergencies? Try time blocking your week and set aside an extra hour or two to dedicate to either an additional assignment, like Jeff mentions at the end of the episode or personal development. If you are able to set aside two hours successfully, set aside three. The more efficient you get with your time management, the more you will be able to work on your brand and work on extra assignments and responsibilities without working overtime.


Career Warfare by David D’alessandro

Contact Jeff

Instagram: @thechampionforum

Facebook: The Champion Forum Podcast with Jeff Hancher



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