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Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Tracey Holden-Quinn has developed and written content for communications plans and websites, social media applications such as Facebook and Twitter, and blogs. She is experienced with conducting needs analysis, establishing goals, recommending and scheduling tactics and strategies, and evaluating results.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Does this look infected to you?

I‘ve done a lot of navel gazing while pondering my personal brand.  I’m almost certain that my navel is not infected.

What I’m not certain about is whether or not there is a place for humour in one’s personal online brand.  Is it possible to leave cyber breadcrumbs of playfulness without damaging your professional brand? 

We all know that the cornerstone of social media is building relationships/friendships that are based on honesty, transparency and integrity.  What if you’re the kind of person who uses humour to engage others? 

Personally I find that clean, sometimes self-deprecating humour shows a warm and trusting side.  And no, it is NOT an indication of low self-esteem or major depressive disorder thank you very much Wikipedia!

Depending on your audience, humour can also be used to get a point across.  If any of you are philosophy majors please hold your nose, and forgive me for what follows. Aristotle believed that three things were needed in order to be persuasive; logos (logical appeal), ethos (authority) and pathos (appeal to emo...  

 It’s usually important to be mindful of all three modes of persuasion, however, is this always necessary when establishing your personal brand? I think that we can favour the use pathos /humour to engage and strengthen our relationships.  

Dan Shawbel wrote a blog titled A Sense of Humor is Worth Big Money in the Workplace.   He admits that companies don’t want “goofballs” dealing with upset clients or flying a plane, but a sense of levity isn’t about being silly.  It’s more about lightening up a workplace, a presentation or a relationship to enhance communication.  I firmly believe that humour can also help diffuse a tense situation.

What do you think?  Is it okay to use humour in your personal brand?  Will it affect your chances of getting a job or will it propel you forward as Dan Shawbel states?

One should take good care not to grow too wise for so great a pleasure of life as laughter.Joseph Addison

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