In this episode of Thought Leader Life, Michael and I talk with #ThoughtLeader Dorie Clark. Dorie is a recognized branding expert who has authored two books on personal branding and creating #ThoughtLeadership. For Dorie, #ThoughtLeadership has two critical components: first is being an expert who advances the discourse in his/her profession and who people look up to for providing new insights. The other component involves having followers, in the sense that #ThoughtLeaders should not be on the top of an ivory tower. If your knowledge is not reaching a mass audience, then you’re actually wasting the potential of great ideas in society. Being a #ThoughtLeader is a noble calling to aspire to because it is about being great and helping to share that with the world.
Dorie says her first book, Reinventing You, basically sprung from her own personal experience as a journalist who was put out of a job at the turn of the millennium and how she had to reinvent herself professionally. The book gives a roadmap for people who would like to reinvent themselves in a big way, like changing careers, or in a smaller way, such as being sharp and fresh in their current jobs. In the course of the interview, Dorie gives a few tips on how to start reinventing yourself, including understanding your current brand, creating a vision of what you want it to be, and demonstrating it through your actions. And after you reinvent yourself, Dorie’s second book, Stand Out: How to Find Your Breakthrough Idea and Build a Following Around It teaches you how to build your brand in such a way that you’ll be recognized as preeminent in your field or niche. Dorie believes that it’s also important to build a professional community around your idea and surround yourself with like-minded people who can push you a little bit and help you clarify and develop the idea. She also underscores the importance of social media and knowing how to use the palette of options so you can figure out where you want to play and how to play your greatest strength. For example, Dorie says she is most comfortable with blogging, and so maximizes this tool to promote herself and her ideas.
Dorie also talks about how #ThoughtLeadership and being sought by people as an expert does not come immediately and takes time. When you do attain that status or following, you need to keep creating content that motivates people to seek you out, and you should continue engaging and interacting.
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Here are some “‘aha’ moments” from the episode. See more in the Aha Moments from Thought Leader Life books available in the Aha Amplifier and watch the interview below!
Having a strong brand as an expert in your field can shield you from the vicissitudes of various economic trends as people seek you out. @dorieclark
To find your audience, find the space you want to play. To find your peers, be friends with those who are playing in that space. @happyabout
Surround yourself with like-minded people to help you short-circuit common mistakes. @dorieclark