Dear Thought Leader (1): On Becoming a Thought Leader

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Unlike many tend to assume, a thought leader does not throw completely new ideas into the available pool of knowledge in an industry. In fact, thought leadership is not knowing so much and sharing about a subject matter either. However, both factors have a part to play in the concept of thought leadership.

As a senior professional or veteran in your field, if you have ever thought about becoming an authority and multiplying your influence to be recognised as a thought leader and earn profitably from doing so, this weekly series of my articles scripted as personalised letters to you will help you to start and excel in your journey.

I invite you to read, apply, and share these inspiring, insightful, and infectious treatises with your like-minded friends and colleagues.

Who is a Thought Leader?

In simple terms, a thought leader has a systematic approach to bringing fresh perspectives into concepts, especially to address a particular audience’s pressing concerns. Not only do thought leaders provide answers to current nagging questions in the hearts of their audience, but they also give insights into related possible occurrences in the future.

Put simply, a thought leader is a leading authority in his or her area of expertise. What’s more? Thought leaders are deep thinkers themselves. They see trends before they happen — they can keep a pulse on what is happening in their industry today, and offer thought-provoking perspectives on what will happen in the future.

Being a thought leader entails a great deal of self-discovery and self-expansion. Until you see such a challenge as worth the while, you can’t lead others effectively with your ideas and messages.

“How do I go about my quest for becoming a thought leader?” you might ask. The following are questions you need to answer sincerely.

1. What exactly do I care about lending my voice, personality and perspective to which will be of great benefit to my audience or a group of people?

2. Are there people who are truly interested in areas of concern over this issue?

3. Do I care about affecting lives for the better by lending my voice to this cause or am I only focused on the supposed benefits that come with being recognised as a thought leader?

4. When I get criticised or challenged for sharing my point of view, will it invalidate my worth as a person?

5. Do I care about using my ideas and how they are shared to effect positive, lasting changes in those who interact with them?

6. Do I see myself as a know-it-all where my subject matter is concerned or am I open to and willing to incorporate and build on other thought leaders’ work where necessary?

7. Am I willing to continue sharing valuable information in this line even if I don’t get recognised for my contributions for so long?

8. Do I regularly ask for feedback, critique, help and constructive criticism on my work, so I’m continually expanding it in positive ways?

If your answers to the aforementioned questions are positive, you are on a journey of thought leadership.  While it may not happen overnight, consistently putting into action the answers above would get you started.

I’d like to keep this brief so you can ingest the ideas here efficiently and effectively. Expect a sequel next week. Also, please feel free to ask me questions here if you have any.

To your greatness,

Bright UK
The Chief Scribe

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