“Stand before the people you fear and speak your mind—even if your voice shakes.”
~ Maggie Kuhn
What is your personal brand? What’s your expression as a leader? What is your legacy?
Your leadership footprint isn’t made of sand. It should be solid and your impact matters. You were meant to do what you’re going to do when you’re doing it. Finding your voice as a leader involves communicating your overall Expression for lasting impact and displaying your personal brand. That is the fifth and final link of the VOICE model of leadership.
Do You Know Your Personal Brand as a Leader?
What are you known for as a leader? What do you represent? What do you stand for? To find your v-o-i-c-e as a leader is to live your Values, create your Outcomes, use your Influence, be Courageous and wrap it all up in your unique Expression. It is all about how you share your personal brand as a leader with your team, your peers and colleagues, your clients, and your community. Become a stellar communicator. Create followers. Contribute your talents and capabilities. Build and re-invent your personal brand so you remain renewed and refreshed. By taking that stand, voicing your opinion, making yourself known, communicating what matters to you…you are expressing who you are with your voice. You are expressing yourself as a leader.
It’s Not All About You
Expressing yourself is not just about you. It’s about the relationships you foster with your clients, customers, colleagues, team, and your community. It’s about the connections you make with people and the relevance of your message. It’s about the way you carry yourself, your non-verbal language. It involves communicating the vision you’ve created for your organization and influencing and enrolling others to come along on your journey.
Expression: Projecting a Credible and Confident Presence
As important as good communication is, expression is more than just speaking, writing, and listening skills. Expression is establishing your personal style as a leader so people know in an instant what you stand for and how you’ll react in a given situation. To sharpen your ability to express yourself, consider the following best practices:
Create open and consistent channels of communication. One way to exercise courage is to listen more than you talk. That also applies to communicating your expression. When you listen, you get input and feedback from others that can help you perfect your brand, your project, and how you interact with others.
Instill confidence and inspire commitment. When you express your values, know your outcomes, have influence, and are courageous, people will naturally want to follow you as a leader. They will know who you are and what you represent. Being consistent and confident through a persuasive personal brand and presence is a key part of building your expression.
Spark curiosity and garner interest. What makes you tick? What are you passionate about? By being creative and sparking interest in your values and your vision, you encourage others to do the same and to help them gain confidence in their abilities of what they can accomplish.
Handle situations calmly without becoming emotional. We are human and can react to situations in a variety of ways. Anger, pre-judgment, and emotional outbursts can easily derail an otherwise strong leader. If you tend to be emotional, practice waiting until you are calm enough to address stressful situations. Know your trigger points. When you have confidence in your ability to handle confrontations calmly, they become less intimidating and people will actually look to you for your leadership when such a situation occurs. Don’t express critical ideas when you are not emotionally centered and grounded.
So Which Type of Leader are you?
See where your VOICE fits onto your personal brand of leadership. If you find yourself on a side of the spectrum that you are not happy with, maybe it is time to change the way you communicate your VOICE as a leader.
|One of These Leaders Who Own Their Personal Brand||OR||One of Those Leaders Who Does Not Own Their Personal Brand|
|Being Purposeful With Your Actions||On Automatic Pilot|
|Makes A Lasting Impression||Blends In|
|Has a Presence||“Who Was That?”|
|Constant Renewal||Stays Stagnant|
|Unique||No Different From Anybody Else|
|Create Your legacy||Let Others Define You|
|Seek Feedback||Run From Feedback|
|Add Value||Take Up Space|
|“Clear” Communication||“Cloudy” Communication|
5 Declarations For Creating Your Lasting Expression
- I create an open and consistent channel of communication and I ask and listen for input and feedback. .
- I instill confidence and inspire commitment through a persuasive presence based on my values, outcomes, influence, and courageousness.
- I consistently listen to understand versus listening to reply.
- I handle all situations without overreacting, becoming emotional, or displaying pre-judgment
- I proactively create the vision of my legacy as a leader and take the necessary steps to make that a reality.
Your expression is your presence, your footprint, the mark you leave on others, the legacy you create, and the trail you leave for others to follow. It is the impact you leave on the world, your community, your organization, your family, your friend, and especially yourself. The world needs your expression. The world needs your voice.
By integrating the Emergenetics Profile into my executive coaching practice, I am able to guide leaders into greater insight and awareness of what is important to them in their lives, and, thus, how creating their visions with aligned outcomes will impact their leadership brand and create the vision they desire.
Finding your VOICE as a leader does not mean shouting to make an impact…it means applying the Emergenetics Profile to reveal your brilliance as a leader by:
- Discovering your critical leadership Values;
- Creating a compelling vision to obtain the Outcomes you need;
- Influencing your relationships with trust and credibility;
- Making decisions that reveal your Courage and confidence to take a stand;
- Communicating your overall Expression for lasting impact.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
As a senior leadership coach and consultant with over 25 years of experience, Paul has a proven and successful track record in building leadership strength within Fortune 100, start-up, high-tech, and non-profit environments. A leadership veteran of such iconic companies as Charles Schwab, Adobe Systems, and Bristol-Myers Squibb, he is now a trusted advisor & coach to many leaders via his innovative coaching programs.
Paul is a frequent conference speaker and workshop facilitator on “Finding your Voice as a Leader” for companies, associations and universities and is also a member of a number of professional societies. His organizational development work has been featured in the latest book, “Consulting on the Inside” by Bev Scott and B. Kim Barnes.
In addition to a B.A. in History from the University of the Pacific and a M.A. in Human Resources Organizational Development from the University of San Francisco, in his spare time, Paul can be found somewhere in the world helping local communities as a project team member with Global Volunteers.