What is a thought leader?
A thought leader is someone who shares their fresh, new ideas and implements them through leadership. A thought leader is:
Rather than following along with the status quo, a thought leader endeavors to do things differently.
A thought leader may take a current problem or situation and offer a new solution; a thought leader shares a message or idea, which they’ve come up with on their own.
If you want to be a thought leader and lead your business on the basis of your own innovation, check out four ways to get started:
That’s what I did. I saw the value and uniqueness in my experience as a female financial planner, so I wrote a book about it. Writing is not only an amazing marketing tool, but it also leverages you as the expert in your field.
Now, whenever someone picks up my book, they have access to my philosophy, leadership style and processes, which have led to my success as a financial planner.
I didn’t invent financial planning, but I did create my own brand in the industry for how I do things differently.
You can start small, by volunteering to speak at a company meeting or presentation. Once you start to build confidence, seek out external opportunities at different companies, in your church or other networking groups.
Honing your speaking skills will strengthen your ability to connect with others, read their body language and tailor your message to your audience.
As a thought leader, it’s essential to be able to communicate your ideas, if you ever hope for them to get off the ground. Everyone has to start somewhere, so get to practicing!
Keep a journal, your phone or scraps of paper with you at all times.
I can’t tell you how many times I got an idea or inspiration while I was driving, on a plane, in the kitchen or running my son around town, and simply jotted it down or recorded a voice memo.
Getting into the routine of collecting my thoughts in an organized manner, allowed me to troubleshoot problems, come up with new processes and eventually write a book.
Writing things down may not come naturally to you, but try committing to setting aside five minutes every day to jot down a few lines, no matter the content and you’ll be amazed at what flows from within you.
What do you want to achieve? As a leader, there’s something you want to do, the knowledge you want to impart or action you want a body of people to take.
Identify what those things are and get super specific on their details — the more specific, the better.
Naturally, your measure of success may take inspiration from those around you, but as a thought leader, always endeavor to take a look at life and business through a different lens.