Reinventing You | Dorie Clark

Reinventing You | Dorie Clark

2017-08-18T13:19:43+00:00 April 8th, 2013|Personal|

Reinventing You is a timely book by my fellow Harvard Business Review blogger Dorie Clark, a journalist turned press secretary, non-profit helmer, campaign manager, documentary filmmaker, and now marketing strategy consultant to the likes of Google, Yale and the National Parks Service. Whether you are early, mid or late career, and are considering disrupting or reinventing, Ms. Clark’s book is a surefire tactical guide, using case studies (e.g. fascinating stories, including her own!) and research-based best practices.

Below is a summary of the book in quotes/soundbites.  Unless otherwise indicated, please credit Dorie when sharing on social media.

We judge ourselves by what we feel capable of doing, while others judge us by what we have already done. – Longfellow v @dorieclark

No one will believe you are serious unless you create content that demonstrates your expertise.

Everyone has a personal brand, whether you want to admit it or not.  It’s called a reputation.

If three people tell you you’re a horse, buy a saddle. – @judyrobinett v @dorieclark

Let’s stop thinking of coaching as “remedial ed for execs”.  Would you call Coach K, a remedial educator for ball players?

Before you reinvent, take a reading vacation.

When someone makes an introduction, thank that person and the the original person who referred you.

Did you know that offers a 2-day test-drive of a new career?

It’s your demonstrated expertise — not your academic credentials — that counts in the business world.

Mentors come in unexpected packages — a younger colleague, a querulous boss.

Who do you admire and why — these people are your de facto mentors.

Part of a mentor relationship is about egotism, we see ourselves in the people we are mentoring — strengths and flaws.

Not sure what you can give back to your mentor?  Think harder.

No one will care about or respect your rebrand if it seems like a narcissistic way to “find yourself”.


When your narrative doesn’t reveal a linear transition, you can only offer the truth:  something powerful changed in you.

When you reinvent, you’re not rejecting one identity for another; you’re transitioning across an isthmus from the old to the new.

Self-doubt has almost no relation to your skills and talents.

Rebranding is a transition or a shift, not a Frankenstein full-body transplant.

One of the best ways to give your personal brand meaning is to be on the lookout for symbolic opportunities.

Blogging (especially video) is one of the best ways to get your intellectual property into the wider world.

Videos are 53 times more likely to make it to the front page of a Google search. – Nate Elliott v @dorieclark

In today’s world, reinventing yourself isn’t optional.

The true secret of professional reinvention is to keep moving forward.

Which of the quotes from Reinventing You most resonated?

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  • Love “The true secret of professional reinvention is to keep moving forward.” In my experience, professional reinvention is this simple. I have held top jobs in the private, public and non-profit sectors – all with just 3 organizations. Finding people and places that support your learning and growth, successes and failures, new ideas and bold experiments is not only good for you, but can change the organization for good – from the inside out. My latest professional — and personal — reinvention is blogging ( Thanks for this and all of the other quotes. Looking forward to reading Dorie’s book.