Your future investor, business/joint venture partner or funder may know a lot about you before YOU ever realise. In todays social media and Google driven society, every step you take and words you say will leave a hallmark on your brand. Whether at Companies House, photos on social media, words on Facebook posts, your actions speak just as loudly as words. Remember your reader may not get your context either!!

Having been involved in global corporate trouble shooting over many years, I know how perception is extremely hard to counteract in the world of brand recognition, personal credibility and due diligence. The largest investor you never had will in all likelihood be the one you never realised existed. They may have been turned off by something you said, something you did and something that does not authentically align with their values.

Someone said to me a few days ago they had been watching me quietly from afar for almost a year before approaching for mentoring. Being authentic is incredibly important – it oozes through every pore in everything you do – and is accentuated during the good times and particularly in the tough times. A bit like alcohol in some regards – having a few beers can make some loud, some fall asleep, some react aggressively etc – is this revealing their true inner personality or creating a new as a reaction? Remember our opinion is less relevant but walking a mile in your future funders shoes to think how they may perceive is wise. How would your potential partner in the future perceive you to be by each action.

Your private investor will not necessarily expect perfection, but they will expect transparency and great communication, an acute sense of anticipation and forward planning and also a solid resoluteness of someone they would welcome in the trenches with them should the ‘proverbial’ hit the fan.

I spent 25 years in corporate life and have witnessed how corporate culture likes to mould you into what it wants you to be – akin to wrapping you in cling film. It can and does suck the life out of many people.

Cast aside the cling film and replace with GoreTex and live life and breathe!!! Be who you are, be authentic, be proud and grow wings and flourish.

Think twice about jeopardising your reputation through a careless act, omission, or poor choice of words. Your personal audit trail is indelible and will propel or anchor you – which do you choose?