A few weeks ago, our fearless leader, Dave Elkington, asked the leadership team to become more connected thought leaders in our online communities.
How does one become more connected? Wikipedia describes a thought leader as an individual who is recognized as an authority in a specialized field and whose expertise is sought and often rewarded.
My immediate thought was to add more friends on Facebook, get more followers on Twitter and connect with more people on LinkedIn, where I could then share something really inspirational.
But how do we do this without sacrificing the quality of our networks? We probably don’t want to be connected to the pizza delivery driver or to every solicitor who has been calling on us for the past year, so what can we do to add meaningful relationships that will add value to our networks?
Fortunately, our CEO anticipated this question and came prepared. He suggested the following three ideas. As I listened to these suggestions, I looked internally to evaluate where I’m at with each. You might want to do the same.
1. Educate yourself on the market
Know who the competition is and what they are doing. Ask yourself these questions: Who are the unicorns? Who’s going public? Who’s being invested in? Who’s laying off? Who’s coming to town to open up shop? Who are the other great companies in our market? Who are great people we should be speaking with and learning from?
2. Share interesting articles on social media
Share, retweet, like and comment on industry-specific or job-specific topics. Become a subject-matter expert. The more you are seen and the more you add your relevant opinion, the more you will be respected and seen as a go-to person in your area of expertise. You will become a trusted source with innovative ideas.
3. Publish at least one article each quarter
I know, I know. The other two seem doable — no problem. This one is a little scarier. How do we write something that someone might actually want to read?
What if you’re not a good writer? What if you have nothing relevant to say? According to Lifehack, a website dedicated to helping you build a better blog, whether you aim to build a portfolio as a writer or journalist, have tips and tricks to make life easier or simply want to help people out, there is a large base of loyal readership from different social channels ready to get inspiration from you.
I’m good at two of these and could use help on the third. How did you do?
Do you do each of these on a regular basis?
We can all use help in at least one of these areas to become more connected.
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