How would you define your Leadership brand? Did you even realize you have a brand? Think of it this way, everything you do, say and stand for personally and professionally creates the brand you’re known for, and by asking a few simple questions you can assure you’re making the right impression.
STEP 1: Start by writing down what you believe you are known for today, maybe you’re a servant leader, a good communicator and you’re empathetic, all signs of a good leader. Maybe you know you struggle with good listening skills. Be honest with yourself in this exercise and include what you think you do well and what you think you need to improve upon.
STEP 2: The next step in this process is to ask your peers and your team, what they see as your Leadership brand. This involves your strengths and areas of opportunities, so you must be open to honest feedback, some of it might sting, but it also might surprise you in a good way. I once had a team member tell me I was challenging, but then she added, in a good way. She explained that I ask a lot of questions to assure an idea she proposes is well thought through. Questioning ideas from all angles is just something I naturally do, I hadn’t thought about it as a marker of how I lead, but I’m now more aware of it and I make sure my questions are always presented in a positive way.
STEP 3: The final step is comparing notes of who you think you are as a leader and how others perceive you. Investigate the gaps and start laying out a plan to change or enhance your Leadership brand. Write down what you need to do to pull your plan through and don’t forget to write down the goals to get you there. Writing down specific goals, increases your chances of making the changes stick.
You don’t have to re-invent yourself during this exercise but to build a solid Leadership brand you should take the time to investigate your brand, then be intentional about making the desired changes.
At Lead to Inspire we want to help you get started on defining your Leadership brand, go to www.leadtoinspire.net and look under products and services for a free tool to guide you through this exercise.