Kim Rogoff '94 is senior vice president for global corporate financial planning and analysis at Coach, Inc. She was the keynote speaker at 2016 Women in Business conference.
You have a personal brand, whether or not you've deliberately focused on it. It's the impact you make on others. It's part of your legacy. And it's worth cultivating, because only you can own it.
There are aspects of my personal brand that were formed during my childhood and are clearly a reflection of how my parents raised me. They instilled their values and ethics in my sister and me. We were expected to work as soon as we could, so it started with babysitting. And, as soon as we could drive, we were expected to have a "real" job. If we wanted something special—like those really cool shoes—we had to save up for them.
I started my career in public accounting at one of the Big 6, which are now the Big 4, and where I earned my CPA ... Had anyone ever told me I would be in the position I am in today 22 years ago, I would have told them they were delusional.
I have been with Coach for nearly 13 years, all in finance, in sequentially more senior roles as the company grew from under $1 billion to $5 billion in sales and most recently became a multi-brand company with the acquisition of Stuart Weitzman. During my career at Coach, I have held three other positions, all CFO roles in different business units.
I have always been authentic—true to who I am. I have always been aware of my strengths and honest about my weaknesses, which we now, of course, call "areas for development," both personally and professionally. I have worked hard to evolve and stay relevant in a rapidly changing world and, above all, I have kept my priorities straight—although I've had to be nimble in juggling them over the years.
Had you asked me the question "what is your personal brand?" 10 years ago, my personal brand was my job. My job defined me. I didn't have the best work/life balance. I was on a straight upwards trajectory in my career, and I was enjoying my success.
I have been married to my husband and partner, Michael, for 11 years. I am a mother, to three amazing children: my daughter, Layla, who is 9 years old (going on 16) and my twin sons, Noah and Blake, who are 4 years old. One of my sons is a special needs child.
When I first found out I was pregnant with my daughter, I remember saying to my husband—now what happens? Do I come off the career track? How will I manage? Then I had my daughter and my world changed! I know that sounds cliché, but it's true ... I didn't have to come off the track, but I was no longer simply defined by my job.
I am proud to say I am a working mom. I am also proud to say that it isn't easy. … I am honest with myself and share my experiences, in both life and work, with those that come up behind me, so that they realize things aren't always easy, that growth is both painful and necessary.
Your brand and what you do with it needs to develop in tandem with where you are in your life.