By Martin Rowinski January 3, 2022
As technology expands our access to information, many executives are seeking to become the voice of that information through thought leadership. Being a thought leader takes dedication, patience, experience, strategy and education, but it also takes enough passion for your industry role to drive both the desire and willpower to try. It may take a lot of work to get there, but becoming a thought leader is the key to shifting your business from maintenance mode to a thriving success.
Being a reliable source of insight and information to influence others can define you as an industry leader and lend credibility to both you and your business. Being a thought leader is one way to establish yourself as an expert whose opinion people should trust, which can bring them to your company when they need resources. When I wrote my book, I had no idea how much it would help my personal brand, as well as my company. Ever since it came out, I receive more inbox requests through various platforms asking about me and the company than ever before. Now, people see my name in the bookstore and turn to me for advice. I established myself as a thought leader and it solidified my credibility.
Whether your clients are other businesses or you deal directly with consumers, gaining credibility through thought leadership is important at all levels. Thought leadership draws people to you, which has a huge positive impact on your business and your personal career growth.
Being a thought leader in your field requires that you stay on top of the best ways to provide people with your products or services. It also requires that you stay on top of current statistics and trends, which means your mind is full of innovative ways to grow. By reading all the other thought leadership content in your industry, you can more clearly identify areas where you still need to grow.
If you find you lack leadership in a specific area, you can find other thought leaders and recruit them onto your board or board of advisors to gain the missing pieces of your formula. A team of top leaders to cover all aspects of your business will lead to growth and success. Even a business that connects executives, like mine, can always change, add new tools and keep up with the times in order to do our job better and grow.
Thought leadership encourages forward-thinking from you, your teams, management and employees. In order to become an expert, you need to continue to pursue knowledge on your subject of expertise, whether through education or experience. To stand out from those who simply educate themselves, you also need to come up with new ideas, innovate and think outside the box. This behavior naturally inspires the people working around you to do the same, and when a group of people engages in this kind of innovative thinking, it gets easier to grow because everyone benefits through learning from one another. A team like this is always moving forward.
Tech giants like Facebook and Google have gotten to where they are today by staying on the cutting edge of their fields and always moving forward. It takes more than studying the past to become an expert in an area — you need to stay an expert by continuing to learn and innovate.
Becoming a thought leader takes time and hard work. Even when you get there, it still requires more effort to maintain your leadership and stay relevant, but the payoff is usually worth the investment. Thought leadership makes you and your company stand out as authorities in your field, demonstrates empathy for others through your desire to share insights and attracts more people to your business. Once you have the stability to maintain your company, take it to the next level of success as a thought leader.