Monday, February 24, 2014

Personal Branding: The other side wants to get to know you

On Friday I was honored to be a speaker at TEDxAmmon. As excited as I was to be part of this inaugural event, at the same time I was petrified.

There shouldn’t have been any reason to be nervous. I was familiar with my topic and had done preparation, research and countless hours of practice. I have been doing public speaking since my preteen years.

This was different, though.  I knew there would be more than 100 people in attendance, a live streaming feed, and within a few weeks a YouTube video. I sat nervously at my table waiting for the event to start, heart racing, reviewing notes, watching my Prezi presentation on my laptop, and praying (oh man, was I praying!) All I could think was if I didn’t completely nail this presentation,  professionally I was toast and probably my business, too.

With about 20 minutes to spare before the event, I made the decision to give up. That’s right – I gave up.

You see, I was so focused on being poised, serious, convincing, well-spoken and rehearsed that I wasn’t focused on what the foundation of the presentation was: personal brands – more specifically my personal brand. When I realized I had lost touch of that I decided to let go of everything that was inhibiting me. I covered my notes, closed my computer, took a deep breath and just prepared to be me. Instead of presenting, I decided to talk to my audience and share my story.

Guess what?  It worked! I was still nervous when I gave my presentation, but the basis of the presentation had my personal brand and the “me” factor written all over it. You see, the presentation itself wasn’t just a presentation but a clear demonstration in real time of the impact personal branding has had on our society. In this case I was the the test subject.

Quite a few people thanked me for my presentation and insight, and some told me I'd moved them to tears. This was what I had wanted, and it wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t let go.

Both personally and professionally, our society is demanding a more personal view of who each of us are. I am not saying that if you walk into an interview I expect you to share every intimate detail of your life story. But I do expect you to share who you are. Your knowledge, experience and career history are important to me, but your personality traits and life experiences mean even more because I want to make sure you are not just a good fit for my clients but the best fit.

How does one create an effective personal brand? As with Friday’s presentation there’s more to the story than we can focus on this week. Next week I'll be focusing on Creating “You” as a Brand.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Smitty's recognized by national travel blogger

 Congratulations to Smitty's Pancake and Steak House, a venerable Idaho Falls institution recently named by "Explore All 50" blogger Alisa Abecassis as one of the Top 10 Breakfast Experiences Across the United States.

Abecassis has been traveling around America with her kids, chronicling their adventures and offering tips to anyone who might be of the same mind.

"Sometimes our hotel doesn’t offer breakfast so we are forced to seek out somewhere tasty to chow down before we head out to our next adventure. Much to our delight we have found some wonderful places that served delicious breakfasts that were truly memorable and we’d like to share that list with you," she writes.

Smitty's was one of my first dining experiences in Idaho Falls, when I came here in 1980 to be best man at a wedding (the wedding party stayed at the Stardust.) Plenty of old Idaho Falls has disappeared in the years since then, and it's nice to see some things not only endure but get the recognition they deserve.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Idaho Falls holding open house on signage plan

The city of Idaho Falls Parks and Recreation Division is holding an open house Monday to comments and opinions on the proposed master way-finding and signage program. The event will be at the Idaho Falls Public Library from 5 to 8 p.m.

In May 2013, Idaho Falls issued a request for proposals for the development of a signage program to guide travelers from highways, streets and trails to city facilities, parks and schools. Pasadena-based Hunt Design, a national leader in identity, signage and environmental graphic programs, was the lowest bidder and was awarded the contract at the City Council's regular meeting Aug. 8. The bid was $72,250 for the city and $38,250 for the Tautphaus Park Zoo.  

Better signs will help promote tourism and emphasize Idaho Falls as a unique and attractive destination, said Parks and Recreation Director Greg A. Weitzel. It will also reduce driver and pedestrian frustrations and improve traffic flows, he said.

The proposal is for universal design standards that reflect the city’s identity; comprehensive
signs that identify primary, secondary and tertiary streets; informational park signs; and trail and  bicycle signage and kiosks. The plan would also include comprehensive way-finding and signage for the Idaho Falls Zoo at Tautphaus Park. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Indian restaurant slated to open in Idaho Falls

A blogger's photo of the Tandoori Oven in Logan, Utah, whose owners plan to open a second location in Idaho Falls next month.
Tandoori Oven, an Indian restaurant in Logan, Utah, will be opening a second location in Idaho Falls, at 3204 S. 25th East, in the Sagewood Plaza near Kiwi Loco.

Owner Jatin Arora, who has been doing business in Cache Valley, for about 10 years, said he was originally looking at Pocatello, but a longtime friend from Idaho Falls alerted him to the absence of Indian cuisine here.

"I've been to Idaho Falls quite a few times, and it seems like an ideal market for us," he said. "There is no real Indian restaurant, and there seems to be a demand for Indian cuisine."

Remodeling is taking place right now, and Arora said he is looking at opening in the middle of March.

For more information, visit Tandoori Oven's website or Facebook page.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Demolition starts on old Bank of Commerce building

Since some of you are bound be asking about this (and because we really like pictures of buildings being torn down) here's what's was going on Monday afternoon at Northgate Mile and Holmes Avenue. The old Bank of Commerce building is being cleared away to make room for Matt Cardon's new drive-through car wash. Cardon sold his old operation at 2010 First Street in 2013 to Trent Birch, and it is now called New Image Car Wash.