Your Leadership Brand is the leader that you want to be and for others to see. It’s the vision you have for yourself and the impact you want to have on the business and those around you and the legacy that you would like to leave on your company or team.
For your Leadership brand to be credible, it must be authentic to your own core values.
If you’re trying to ‘fake it’, your actions will cast a shadow across your team and your business, which will create misalignment and scepticism of your Leader brand.
There are 4 key steps to building and consistently demonstrating your Leadership Brand.
Why would people WANT to follow you?
Think about your values regarding leadership.
- What’s really important to you?
- What do you stand for?
- What do you stand against?
Consider key words, phrases, and characteristics you would use to describe yourself as your ideal leader.
Also think about a leader you truly admire – how would you describe them? How can you build on your own leadership to emulate their qualities?
In building your Leader Brand, you need to keep your values front of mind, while building and growing these traits to create a lasting impact.
Being true to your values can take courage at times. But in doing so, you will reap rewards.
Consider how you operate in each of these areas
- Strategy – have you defined the future vision of your team/ business? Do you know WHY you do what you do? (Hint: it’s not just to make profit!)
- Execution – are your goals aligned to your strategy and do you take action quickly? Do you have the right resources and systems in place to achieve?
- People leadership and development – do you authentically connect with, support and grow your people?
- Personal proficiency – do you act with integrity, emotional intelligence and build trusting relationships with your team and others in your network?
Consider what elements you could build to ensure a more holistic leader brand, and take action every day to make this happen.
Remember to keep true to your core values. If something doesn’t feel right, ask yourself, what’s the disconnect? Is it uncomfortable because it’s a growth opportunity, or is it a misalignment of your values?
Your Leader Shadow is how others perceive you, based on your actions as a leader.
Regularly ask yourself, to what extent do my actions (what I say and how I act) reflect the Leadership brand that I want to be known for?
Consider examples of how your actions:
- demonstrate your intended Leadership brand
- fall short of your intended Leadership brand
Be true to yourself here. By understanding both actions that are supporting your Leadership brand and values, as well as actions that may be detracting from these, you can make conscious decisions on what course to follow in the future.
What are you doing well? Build on these – what you focus on grows, so keep focussing on the good stuff :)
What things are ‘watch outs’ for you to be mindful of in future. Also think about your tired signs… when stressed or overworked, these ‘watch outs’ pop up more easily – so make sure you see the signs and practise self care to avoid falling into the pit. Even a 10 minute walk can help you reset.
Here are some ideas to plan for how you will put your Leadership brand into action on a daily basis:
- With your broader team and peers, define and publicly share your Leadership Brand to crystallise what it is that you stand for as a leader.
- When faced with critical decisions, take a moment to pause and ensure your planned action will align with your Leadership brand.
- Get feedback on the degree to which you are living your brand.
- At the end of the day, your Leadership brand is a touchpoint for leadership focus. It keeps who you are and what you stand for in the front of your mind.
- 360 degree surveys are a also great way to receive confidential feedback.
If you would like support in developing or increasing your Leadership brand, this is an area I love to support Leaders with! Reach out via the link below: