I was inspired to write this last night after “I started thinking” that we all are capable of being “Thought leaders” in our right. This meme came from a couple of posts that I read over at Amber Naslund’s and Valeria Maltoni’s blogs. Amber had touched on this week about reputation and branding, value propositions and being personal, While Valeria listed 25 ways to fail and come out on top. I highly suggest after reading this short post that you head over there to read what they have to say.
While both Amber and Valeria have taken different approaches to the same topic, the message to me is quite clear. I’m going to sum it up for you. Right now, you read our blogs for pleasure, for business, for insight, for research or for shits and giggles. The reasons are many, but what I want people to realize and what Amber and Valeria are saying in oh so many words is you can be the thought leader or the influencer who inspires us. With that being said, I am a firm believer in empowerment, I think it creates more leaders and less followers and more original thought in doing so.
We talk about thought leaders in social media all the time. But what you need to realize is that all of us, thought leaders and influencers included, are starting from the same point. We start with nothing and we build from there. I tweeted earlier today that everyone can make the new rules. I thought that, because I read and hear all the time about the new rules of marketing or the new rules of media, or social media marketing rules of engagement. And I get that. But guess what? You can make your own rules too! Wanna know why? Because we’re all still figuring it out ourselves. We always will be. But you can be the one that shows us the way, just as much as the next person.
Be the one that makes or breaks the rules. There is no reason why YOU can’t be the thought leader.
Marc, I love this sentiment. And I’d add that not only CAN you be a thought leader, but you SHOULD be. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail. It’s a favorite quote of mine, but it’s only as good as the action behind it. I, for one, am grateful for the opportunity to make a tiny mark on the landscape, and I hope many others do too. Thanks for including me in your excellent post.
We had a very lively conversation a few months ago when I asked if blogs (and social media) were the new thought leadership 😉 I see it more like changing the game, which is what Amber is saying up here as well, in a different way. I also see us all as connected to each other – everything is connected. So, as we just has the opportunity to experience with the financial system, every time someone goes down, we all loose. Why not help each other succeed, instead?
@Amber There’s strength in numbers Amber and the kool ade we’re serving tastes pretty good.
@Valeria Paying it forward makes complete and utter sense to me.