When I’m working with leaders to help them develop a more authentic brand, cultivate their competitive edge, and articulate a unique brand narrative I observe a lot of hesitancy. Usually executive leaders don’t realize they are holding back because this fear is in their blind spot. But research confirms that one of the greatest obstacles to corporate promotions is leaders themselves, who don’t fully highlight their strengths and experiences. Leaders often forget that if they want to continue to move upward and assume more responsibility, they have to focus on promoting themselves. Nobody else is going to do it for you, especially if you are competing for the same promotion.
Reframe Past Setbacks
If your subconscious mind is weakened by a fear of repeating some past mistake, that is going to manifest itself in a way that undermines your power. Your executive presence will seem superficial, as if it’s just an external gimmick covering over your real self.
Reframe and rethink any past failures or setbacks and understand that if they did not happen, you would not have the high-value wisdom and experience you bring to the table now. That realization will eradicate these internal doubts and hesitancies so that you can transform them into core strengths.
Own Your Experience
Leaders have to be bold. They need to take calculated, strategic risks. They have to innovate, and show courage in the midst of fear and uncertainty. You have to motivate others to go beyond their perceived limitations. Leaders who have done those things themselves over the course of their careers can inspire others to do it, too, by personal example.
So share those stories and incorporate your experienced realizations into your brand in a positive way. The entirety of your experience – both the successes and the challenges – can weave a compelling narrative and be a powerful brand attribute.
Play to Your Strengths
Do the deep work of self-exploration that will lead to breakthroughs and insights that empower your leadership mindset. Breaking through negative conditioning that holds you back enables you to move past your cozy, but stagnant, comfort zone. You’ll tap into genuine core strengths and have new confidence to be bring one-of-a-kind value to the table.
Once those deeply-ingrained mindset obstacles are removed, you can really play to your strengths with much greater credibility and poise. It will also free-up palpable energy you didn’t realize you had, that can invigorate your executive presence and get you the recognition and attention your leadership brand deserves.
What leadership brand attributes that you want to exude attract you to iconic leaders? How can these ideas help you acquire them? I’d love to hear from you!