Leadership – particularly extraordinary leadership – is a mindset.
Think about the truly respected, influential leaders that you look up to. They didn’t become exceptional simply by being promoted to a leadership position. They are recognized as extraordinary leaders because they have a presence, a mindset, a brand that they’ve positioned themselves in, either intentionally or organically.
Management Study Guide defines brand positioning as “refers to ‘target consumer’s’ reason to buy your brand in preference to other.” This definition also applies to your personal brand as a leader. When you think about it, everyone positions themselves in all kinds of ways. Their decisions and actions have a direct effect on whether their position is positive, negative, or neutral. To become an extraordinary leader, you do not want to fall into the position of a negative or neutral (not influential) brand. There are five keys to improving your personal brand and positioning yourself as an extraordinary leader.
First and foremost is your self-esteem. How do you feel about you? That’s the most important question of all because you cannot expect others to feel the presence of an extraordinary leader if you are dwelling in the depths of imposter syndrome. If you don’t feel like you have the best view of yourself to position your leadership brand, take steps necessary to improve your self-confidence and develop your leader’s mindset.
Secondly, you position yourself with your appearance. When people look at you, what do they see? When people look at a letter that you send them, what do they see? When people look at your desk, what do they see? How do they make an opinion about you or your team or your organization based on their exposure to you?
Next, you position yourself with your words. Ask the question, “why should this person listen to me now?” If you were to ask yourself this question every time you make a presentation, telephone call, or you write an email to someone you will find that you’ll become clear in your communication with people and get better results because of it. At Crestcom, we also like to play the “So What?” game. You start with the message you were originally going to send and ask yourself “so what?”
I’m writing a blog about positioning yourself as an extraordinary leader
To be a resource for other leaders who are looking for guidance on becoming more influential.
So they can become better leaders in their organizations
So that the companies or organizations they work for will become more successful and grow
And so on….
The fourth way you position yourself is with your focus. What are you focused on? What is your team focused on? Too many people are focused on generating more income. Is that really the right focus or should we be focused, you and I and everybody who works with us, should we be focused on generating more value? An extraordinary leader’s mindset says loudly and clearly it is all about value.
The more value I bring to this organization, by definition I can create more income. The more value I can bring to my customers or to my team, by definition I create greater loyalty and more demand for our brand, company, or department.
Lastly, you position yourself with your attitude. Attitude can sometimes be a tough one. I like to start by asking myself, “am I decidedly better today than I was yesterday?” Ensure that you create and keep a positive attitude by committing to becoming better every day. Because the enemy of extraordinary leadership is decidedly complacency.