Chris Christie, governor of New Jersey, has become a political rock star. Today, the influential POLITICO covers his possible run for the White House in depth. Here you can click on a video of diverse opinion about him. Folks don't have an opinion about you unless you're out there. Fat jokes have become the ultimate cool wit.
So, how did Christie create this presence? The answer seems to be his instinct about personal branding or being able to create your unique space. That sets you apart. Instead of competing head-to-head, you just, well as we said in the 1960s, did your own thing. Do it well, and you will last out there.
Christie developed or defaulted into a number of trademarks. Those include his blunt rhetoric, courage such as standing up to the public-sector movement, and his fat. He is different. More importantly, he took the risk of not being a cookie-cutter version of what a governor was or is supposed to be.
The lesson here is clear: to develop our own space in the marketplace we have to take risks. Some of those will not work out. But all we need is enough that do to make a very good living, and on our terms.