GHC Notes: Jo Miller Leadership and Branding Talk

I had the pleasure and luck to not only attended the Grace Hopper’s Celebration of Women in Computing 2011, but also I got a Hopper volunteer position and I volunteered at one of Jo Miller’s great workshops. So, below are my notes for the workshop:

It is time to proactively identify and take back your branding.

Be famous for something, and know your claim to fame. That is, focus on what others detect is your core strength, and develop your branding.

Think about someone who brand themselves well. What are they known for? What is their brand?

Here are the general steps for this workshop:
1. Identify ideal career niche. What do i want to be when i grow up.
2. Create personal brand statement
3. Making brand visible

1.Identify your ideal career niche.

This involves ideal niche. Three elements:
1. What are you passionate about, as they relate to your professional life? In the zone, time flies by.
2. What are your skills and talents?
3. When does your company and or industry need and value?

When you know these, you get a rush.

Assignments. What does this look like? Sweet spot in your career. Ask others.

So, once you know that now, the next phase is create a brand statement.

2. Create a brand statement.

Be authentic on your own leadership. Style. Don’t change it. Own it. Communicate it.

Pooper scooper of lower level To the change agent

Pain in the butt, problem finder to passion to excellence.

Make a short and concise,and scalable. Example is go to person, subject matter, contributor, team player to innovator, change agent, people motivator, to charismatic leader

Example: where do i want to be in a few years? What do i need to know or be known for now, to be known for that later?

Turns fantasy into reality. Dreams into reality. Connector, innovator, empower others, mentor, leader-maker, catalyst, go to person,

Rules of networking:

  • Per week, when not looking for a job, make ten connections per week.
  • When looking on a job, it’s eighty.


  • A brand is consistency. Something that you can keep consistent over time. Scrutinize it. Don’t let it hurt you later.
  • Find your passion. What gets you out of bed in the morning.
  • Don’t be afraid to change. Its normal to change career five times.
  • Go network, because your brand comes to you. If its negative, turn it positive.
  • Document and publish. Don’t stress, just reflect on what you’ve done, and what you want to do. Allow others to see the value.

3. Communicate your branding.

Here’s an elevator speech to fill in: Name, job title, i am known for, and come directly to me when you need a, b, c. 

For this step:

  • Work less
  • Communciate brand
  • Have career planning conversations with your leaders. How many leaders know about it? Sharing. Start the conversation with “I would like to work for you one day. I am interested in etc, or work on etc.” Ask for help. Work hard on the right projects. Make career defining roles.


How to promote accomplishments:

  • Present in meetings, invite leaders
  • Send out newsletter or regular status updates
  • Submit article to your organizations newsletter
  • Ask to be nominated to an award
  • Ask a colleague to toot your horn, and reciprocate
  • Speak on panels, conference
  • Forward kudos emails with “fyi”.

Think of your accomplishments like showing off your kids. Start small. Do what you say you will, and communicate if you can’t.

Promote your teams. If want a project, start a grassroots effort, and a cross functional level, so that your executives can’t say no.

Leadership is an opinion, results are a fact.

Speak up. If you can’t, ask a question.

Posted in Professional

2 Responses to GHC Notes: Jo Miller Leadership and Branding Talk

  1. ss says:

    This was awesome to read. Great advice. thanks for sharing

    • Anamary says:

      Aaww thanks! This is the sort of thing that ya don’t get in grad school, but you totally see in conferences and outside of school. 🙂

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