How to become a digital thought leader

What is the difference between influencers and digital thought-leaders? Influencers are individuals who promote a brand or product. Digital thought-leaders seek to influence how others think and act via a range of online channels. Digital thought-leadership is about starting and driving a conversation in the wider world. What does a digital thought-leader say? First and foremost, you need to have a point of view. There is already enough “vanilla” online, so don’t add to it. Secondly, your content must bring value. It can offer inspiration, insight, practical advice, or emotional benefit. Valuable content is closely linked to your personal experiences, …

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How to become an effective storyteller

Telling stories is hardwired into humans. We have been telling the same stories or variations of them for thousands of years. Storytelling allows us to communicate our values, passions and other components of our personality. Whether you are a politician or executive, a compelling narrative is required to build trust with customers, voters or employees. When it comes to storytelling, there are a few rules to adhere by. First, refrain from using jargon. The “curse of knowledge” means that we often assume that others already know what we know, and we end up using terms that lay people cannot understand. Equally important to a great …

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How to design an effective communications strategy

A communications strategy is a masterplan for how to get from the place you are now to the place you want to be in the fastest and most effective way. Without a clear strategy, you risk ending up with a series of unconnected and confused actions that will have little impact on your goals. But how do you develop an effective strategy? When designing Tony Blair’s historic campaign, Alastair Campbell, Blair’s former director of communications, adopted the O-S-T or Objective-Strategy-Tactics approach to lead Blair to a landslide victory. The benefit of outlining a strategy following the O-S-T format is that there’s laser focus on how to achieve …

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How to discover your authentic voice

Personal branding can help you propel your career forward.  For 20 years, I have been the trusted advisor of CEOs and executives of some of the world’s biggest companies. I am passionate about helping people to share their unique voice with the world.  As well as my business, I also run a successful podcast on CEO communications and have written two books on the same subject, so I know just how important it is to define your personal brand to ultimately be success.  For me, personal branding has never been an exercise in becoming Instagram famous. As a professional, your …

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How to build your personal brand

Investing time and energy in a personal brand is not a vanity project. On the contrary, it can be just as important as building a corporate brand. Research by L.E.K. Consulting attributes nearly half (48%) of a company’s reputation to that of its CEO, and this figure is only expected to rise. Everyone has a reputation, but only those who curate and invest in their reputation can build a brand. The purpose of a personal brand is to ensure that everyone has the same positive impression of you. Whatever you decide, it is crucial to stand for something, have a topic …

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5 things you can learn online at home this weekend

Given the current situation, many of us will be stuck at home this weekend with ample free time. In lieu of going on vacation, this weekend may be the perfect opportunity to learn something new at home. If you’re sick of the 1000-piece puzzle that’s half-finished in your living room, and baking sourdough is not for you, why not think about enhancing your professional skillset with an online course. Online courses are an excellent way to learn a new skill. Designed to help you develop your skills in a fun and flexible way, online courses have a high return on …

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Empathy, Solidarity, Leadership: How to communicate in a crisis

How leaders communicate has a huge impact on how well we will deal with this crisis. We have seen many great examples in recent weeks – those who lift our spirits, treat citizens as adults, and help protect the public.  Unfortunately we have also seen some counterproductive and even divisive statements. For those of us who are called upon to communicate in this crisis – be it with our teams, business partners or the public – please keep the following principles of communication in mind: Empathy – Solidarity – Leadership.  Below, I share some of my best advice for how …

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How to build your personal brand and crack the LinkedIn code

For many professionals today, it is crucial to build a personal brand to help take your reputation to the next level. For 20 years, I’ve been working with CEOs, executives and founders across the globe to do exactly this. The questions I get asked time and time again are: How should I build my personal brand? How can I stay ahead of the competition and boost my career? How can I leverage my social networks like LinkedIn? Why LinkedIn? Gaining traction with LinkedIn is not an easy feat, but a worthwhile exercise, nonetheless. LinkedIn really is the number one professional …

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How to Build your Personal Brand

Why Communications is a Hard Skill

Today, mastering communications is not simply a matter of adding another string to your bow. Communications has become a fundamental or hard skill for CEOs, executives and anyone with ambition. Without excellent communication, it is almost impossible to succeed professionally or personally in the 2020s. What triggered this fundamental shift from soft to hard skill? In short, automation and artificial intelligence. They are revolutionising our lives and workplaces: everything that can be automated or digitalised will be over the course of the next few decades. This need not be a cause for despair; on the contrary, it is an opportunity …

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Why CEO Communications is More Important Than Ever

Milton Friedman’s dictum that the social responsibility of CEOs is to deliver profits for their shareholders was dealt its latest and perhaps most significant blow on 19 August. 181 members of Business Roundtable, the leading business lobby in the United States, issued an open letter addressing the “Purpose of a Corporation”. The signatories, including the CEOs of Amazon, American Express and Walmart, declared “each of our stakeholders is essential. We commit to deliver value to all of them, for the success of our companies, our communities and our country”. It is obvious that society’s understanding of their role is currently …

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