As a kid growing up in Los Angeles, surrounded by large Hollywood premieres and hugely branded events like the 1984 Olympics and Rose Parade, Jayzen Patria became enamored with what he calls “uniquely branded experiences.” He asked himself how he could create similar experiences for those around him.
When he joined the workforce, Patria had the opportunity to work for his dream company. But on his very first day of orientation, he was asked to remove a red AIDS ribbon he had been wearing on the lapel of his suit after he had worked a charity event. The HR professional told him, “We don’t stand for that here. And I need you to go back into the parking lot and lock that in your car.” This experience became a serious inflection point for him, and from that day on he wanted to ensure that everyone felt a sense of belonging in the workplace.
This, combined with his authentic passion for creating uniquely branded experiences, inspired Patria to create his Lead With Your Brand™ system to help people get in touch with their own personal brands.
Now a sought-after personal branding expert and diversity advocate, Patria has worked with some of the world’s top entertainment, media, and tech companies for the past 30 years. His Lead With Your Brand™ system is all about taking a brand marketer’s toolkit and using it to super-serve your audience while helping your employees advance in their careers.
The noted keynote speaker, thought leader, and facilitator believes that the success of implementing a Lead With Your Brand™ system within an organization can be measured by whether employees are excited and motivated about owning their careers. It is about ensuring that employees are in the driver’s seat of their careers.
“The aim is to inspire employees to own their careers,” he says. “No one cares more about their careers than they do.”
On top of that, Patria is even more passionate about helping employees and workers from marginalized communities lead their brands to their next career breakthroughs. “The reality is we still live in a world that’s filled with bias. Coming from a multicultural family, with a mother who is white and a father of Asian Pacific Islander and Hispanic descent, he had the privilege of being fair-skinned, but saw the different kind of treatment his siblings were given, being of darker skin.
“If I don’t develop a unique brand and lead with that every single day, as an employee from a marginalized community, it is easy to just be classified or become known as the ‘gay man that works in HR,’ or ‘the Latinx person that works in accounting.’ So I’m passionate about helping people identify themselves in ways that show their unique value, their points of view, and how they can add value to their organization, so that they are known as the go-to person for their expertise, and not known as the identity that others might see while sitting in an office.
According to Patria, who also produces and hosts the weekly Lead With Your Brand podcast, which is now in its fourth season, the common challenges in driving diversity, equity, and inclusion are thinking that it is somebody else’s problem to solve. Rather, inclusion must happen in your own daily interactions and decision-making. To address this, he provides leadership with the right mindset, which includes awareness building, training, and foundational elements.
“If leaders are only rewarded for financial results, they may not necessarily do the most inclusive things. Therefore, it is about balancing the rewards, goals, and key performance indicators (KPIs) with which people are measured.”
While Jayzen has faced resistance at times in advocating for DEI programs in organizations, the pushback typically comes from those who do not want to rock the boat. He addresses this by getting them to think about changing people’s hearts and minds.
“Sharing personal experiences in the workplace and in life enables others to become in touch with their own experiences, or hear the experiences of their colleagues, and see the value and impact of either implementing a program or the impacts and challenges of keeping the status quo.”
And his podcast is all about sharing these kinds of authentic experiences.
“The Lead With Your Brand™ Podcast is for people who are really looking to turn up the volume, show their value and lead with their brand toward their next career breakthrough. In each conversation, we have a chance to really help understand how an executive or leader who has been there has overcome obstacles in their own career to find breakthroughs and how they define their own unique and authentic leadership brand.”
For more information on Patria and Lead With Your Brand, visit www.jayzenpatria.com.