By @SimonCocking

A great interview with our first Icelandic interviewee Runa Magnusdottir. Author of the book BRANDING YOUR X-FACTOR, how the secret to your success is already in front of your…

Your background, how did you end up doing what do you now?

I’m a fast forward thinking lifetime entrepreneur with a background in design and marketing who has from the time I can recall had this urge to be independent and love everything I do. Back in 2006 I sold my successful wholesale business with no plans at all for the future. For the first time in my life, I gave myself the time to think about who I was, what I wanted out of life.

Out of pure passion, I’ve started a global online platform for women entrepreneurs that took off like a rocket.  I noticed that despite the fact amazing women entrepreneurs were signing up for the platform, very few of them knew how to brand themselves.

Back in 2008 my country Iceland had the big economic meltdown, leaving us feeling isolated and lost.We had not only lost our money, but we had also lost our identity.  In our search to figure out who we really were, I was part of a grassroots group who set up a country national assembly where we re-invigorated our future vision, values and missions as a nation, in other words, the brand called Iceland.   That work made me look even deeper into myself which lead me to support leaders building their and their team’s brand.  Because of my global network, my branding business flew off in the international market – a living proof of what they say:  Your net worth is in your network!


How goes the book? What inspired you to write it? Why is it helpful?

I wrote the book Branding Your X-Factor, how the secret to your success is already right in front of your… (tits) in 2014, first and foremost because I wanted to share with them my journey and my clients journey to succeed the world that seems to be at double speed.  I wanted to demonstrate to people they already have what they need to succeed.  I wanted to encourage them  to stop, check first who they really are, what they stand for, check their story and how they can in a proactive and powerful way communicate their brilliance in a humble, confident way.

 what will you be talking about?

How the economic crash in Iceland back in 2008 became the greatest gift, turning our crash into cash.  I will be talking about what I see as the gap in the marketplace and how smart businesses can fill that gap and build a business that people will instantly love. I’m also going to demonstrate how to discover your X-factor… yep all in 12 minutes  – are you getting excited?

How were last 12 months, what went well?

12 months ago, my book was just about to be ready for publication.  The months following my book and personal branding online product launches has been another transformational journey.  A journey where I’ve been so fortunate to be given the opportunity to work with amazing business and political leaders worldwide, helping them to discover their X-factor and natural flow in life.

Anything you’d do differently?

The most powerful lesson  I’ve learned in those 12 months is the power of doing less and getting more.  That is a challenge for me and at the same time, when I manage to let go of my control, just allow my X-factor and vitality to flow, that’s when everything seems to happen. So, what would I do differently?  I guess I would pay more attention doing less and staying in flow, than thinking I have to do everything.

You see, there is one thing to be able to do ANYTHING and thinking you have to do EVERYTHING.

Plans for the future?

Oh, you bet, got big exciting plans for the future.  A plans are enabling me to help leaders to understand their X-factor and vitality in business and life.

My 12 months Plans Include:

  • Opening up for registration to certify professional coaches and facilitators in my X-factor Personal Branding methodology.

  • Working with boards who want to understand their natural ability to turn a good board into a great board by understanding their X-factor and vitality.

  • Not to forget to be able to accept all the amazing opportunities to speak on this vitally important topic.

You are active on Twitter, is this part of how you do business?

Twitter is becoming more and more important for me and my business.  I’ve created number of JV’s from connections there, not to mention opportunities to be interviewed in all sorts of online and offline media platforms (just like this one)

Scott Eddy speaks about personal brand being important to your business, what do you think?

I think he is spot on!  Your personal brand is every single thing you do, don’t do, say, don’t say.  It’s what other people say about you when you are not in the room, like Jeff Bezos CEO of Amazon said so memorably, and he is right too.  If your personal brand is inauthentic… your business will suffer.

What is it like to work in Iceland? As such a small country do you have enough work there, or do you have to look externally also?

Yes, Iceland is a small country.  My business has from day one been international.  Iceland is a great place to live and work for many reasons, one of them is that despite the fact that I’m based in Iceland, it’s location is convenient.

It takes me only around 2.5 hours to fly to London, and about 5 hours to fly to NYC or Boston, and we use SKYPE a whole lot for all communications, conference calls and other online meetings.

Blogging, who do you follow / like?

That’s a great question, and slightly difficult for me to answer as I’m a fan of so many thought leaders.

Out of the top of my head I would say I love to read and learn from my partners at Make Your Mark GlobalDr. Andrea Pennington with her Ageless Vitality, and Thoranna Jonsdottir is doing with her Marketing Untangled blogs.  I find Deri Llewellyn-Davies a.k.a. The Strategy Man vlogs often to be spot on, huge fan of Nicholas Haines the founder of Five Institute with his Vitality test and Five stages of business methodology.

Just to mention a few.

Being a big user of social media, how do you manage life and work, and online / offline balance?

My strategy is very simple.  I take a quick little rounds the different social media platforms 2-3 times a day, that seems to work the best.  My motto has always been to love my work building the relationships I’m creating with my social media activities, so this word balance somehow doesn’t fit in there, it just is.

How do you create space to think / dream and write?

It’s extremely important for me to give myself the space to think – dream and write.

I live in the outskirt of Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland.  It takes less than 10 minutes to walk into pure nature with the Atlantic Ocean and the wind from the North Pole to surround me.

My daily walks in nature with my little Bichon Frise, Bella give me the space to think outside of the box, dream magical dreams.  If the dreams are exciting enough during the walk,  then I write them down when I come back home.

Anything else to add / we should have asked you?

Himm….that’s a great question.  How about… “How can people find their X-factor?”

Find out more here

Other information?

Motivation – Inspiration – Success
Mission statement:
Globally Supporting the 21 Century Leaders & their Teams to
Make Their Mark Global by Branding Their X-Factor.

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