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How Trust & Respect Ultimately Defined Prince’s Brand

The world lost a great musician recently in the sudden death of legendary musician Prince. The genre and gender-bending musician, has departed the earth, though his music and legacy will live on forever.

Perhaps no other performer of his time, or any time before or after, forced audiences to reexamine who they were and what music was capable of, in quite the way he did. From his humble beginnings in Minnesota to his breakthrough in the mid-70s and 80s, and his masterpiece Purple Rain, he possessed an intangible charisma that kept us all intrigued. There is no shortage of stories circulating stating what a unique, giving and fascinating individual Prince was to the very end.

He was n

otoriously private and even in the current age of being always on, citizen journalists and TMZ , he managed to keep his private life – well, private. Even his closest friends being interviewed last week remained guarded of his privacy. TV news anchors and Sherriff’s department were very clear in stating their commitment to maintaining the late musician’s privacy. Reporters have shared how they obliged his “unusual” wishes to not take notes during interviews so they could focus on the message he was sharing. Even residents in small town of Chanhassen, MN, where he lived and worked out of his Paisley Park estate, seemed to respect his wishes of privacy. How did he do this? In my opinion, he earned people’s respect by being a down-to-earth dedicated musical genius who respected quality of life, the earth, and who undoubtedly believed in and trusted other people. Who could hate a guy like that?

Take a Page Out of the Purple Ones Book!

Can you as a small business owner emulate this? First off – always believe in what you do, how you do it and never compromise. Prince who often wore gender-defying clothing in the 70s and 80s didn’t hesitate to make his first televised appearance in a black bikini bottom and thigh high -heeled boots. Hey you gotta respect somebody to go against the norm like that PLUS he had that unmatchable talent to back it up. There was confidence in his chosen style and brand – he owned it. The fact that his brand of music was like nothing heard before made him even more of an anomaly – it was his differentiator.

In the future, there might be a few opportunists selling stories that might turn out to be unsavory – but right now – all we hear are his close network of friends of all races, genders and ages saying how good of a person he was and confirming his unwavering commitment to his musical brand. He was a secret philanthropist and good friend to many – a nice legacy to leave behind, right?

I leave you with this – being genuine goes a long way in earning the respect and trust of others. The confidence you exude when you are being true to your personal brand will make you a better and more trusted business leader and employer. And perhaps throw a little modesty in there too, that couldn’t hurt.

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