Personal branding probably won’t help you get a job. But it is making us all more accepting of an increasingly dehumanizing job market.
When people are turned into brands, they become responsible to their brand—and to their bosses—all the time, everywhere.
Visualizing oneself as a brand also makes worker solidarity more difficult, Gershon says. Brands compete with each other; they don’t come together to demand higher pay, or decent health care, or reasonable hours. When people think of themselves as brands, they are speaking the language of reputation, appearance, and marketing. It’s hard to switch from that to a discussion of moral responsibility.