Executive thought leaders are often referred to as the ‘go to’ people, the experts who lead the current thinking on an area of business that they are experienced in, passionate about, and influential on.
They set themselves apart from the rest of their peers, CEOs and other industry figures, by being highly respected, having opinions that are sought after by the media, and their industry peers and taking current thinking to the next level. Not only will it benefit the organisation they work for, it can also dramatically improve the trajectory of their career.
Celebrated for their original, high quality content, they are often the people who speak on the TEDx circuit, create and develop global brands, or write best selling ‘must read’ business books, but not exclusively so.
Senior executives who have a unique approach, sharp insight, and knowledge on their chosen area, acquired through experience can be thought leaders too.
Career Brownie point #1
Being seen as an executive thought leader makes you a person of note within your professional or business sphere, someone who is cited by others to lend weight to their arguments, and whose innovative, and potentially business transformational ideas inspire others within the organisation.
Career Brownie point #2
Executive thought leaders don’t wait for people to seek them out for advice or inspiration. They maintain a presence in the most influential places, their radar is always active, they are quick to respond to emerging trends in their industry, and most importantly they share their thoughts, seeing it as a natural extension of their leadership role and responsibility.
Career Brownie point #3
Executive thought leaders are able to communicate clearly on complex areas of business in a way that can be clearly understood by a broad audience. Demonstrate empathy for the challenges they are facing and the problems they need to solve, and make yourself available. Allow people to connect with you, respond to your thoughts and views – and share them with others.
Being recognised by your peers and people the wider world as an executive thought leaders is one of the highest compliments you can be paid. As you develop and build your unique brand of thought leadership, people will increasingly be drawn to it; to you and to your organisation. You will be a ‘stand out’ figure who leads the thought, and that can’t be a bad thing for your executive career.