Why Personal Reputation Matters
In today’s world, leaders’ reputations are of increasing importance to their organizations. Here’s why.
Faced with overwhelming amounts of information, we tend to specialize
That’s why we turn to third parties to help us interpret issues we ourselves don’t understand. We lend greater relevance and credibility to those whose judgment we trust.
The market demands CEO activism
Public opinion and corporate stakeholders demand that business leaders be active in political and social debates. It makes taking a position on a wide range of topics a requirement.
The third wave of transparency
In addition to being aware of a company’s products or services, how they are made and the impact they have on the environment and society, people want to know the leaders of those organizations better and more intimately, in order to determine if they share the same values.
When deciding whether to buy a good or service from a company, take a job or partner with an organization, people want to know what a company stands for and who stands behind it.
A less hierarchical society
Our digital environment grants people greater access to decision-makers, making in imperative that leaders—and anyone who wishes to be one—take steps to actively manage their reputations and their relationships with the world.
Traditional communications strategies are outdated
Traditional public relations agencies, which operate within the limitations of 20th century communications paradigms, still view communications in terms of image rather than credibility. They value celebrity (recognition) above credibility (reputability), which is why traditional communications strategies are now outdated. An image cannot be sustained and, what’s more, runs the considerable risk of being imposed at the expense of what the leader really brings to the table.
The Thinking Heads Approach
Reputation is the focus of our Leadership Positioning Services (LPS), a collaborative methodology which is developed and implemented with the client’s team in several phases:
A leader is a critical component in the development of a company’s reputation.
A leader is more than just the voice of an organization. The leader’s voice must be put into the service of the organization she or he leads. This nuance allows the leader’s voice to resonate more broadly and to connect with the organization’s stakeholders on a different level.
We discover what makes a leader special.
We always begin with the individual’s personal story. We analyze the leader’s own life and experience to find out what makes him or her unique and what sets this person apart. We seek to identify areas in which the leader has something distinctive to offer society.
We align personal and corporate values.
In order to position a CEO as the most effective proponent of the organization’s reputation, it is imperative to align the strategy with the company’s communications plan and day-to-day activities.
We build an issue monitoring system to ensure the leader is current on the subject matter relevant to his or her thought leadership. We work with academics, analysts and researchers to build a tracking system with periodic updates on important and innovative thinking on these issues.
We help our clients iterate new ideas or perspectives to use in producing thought-provoking content for their target audiences on relevant issues. The client is the fulcrum of this highly collaborative process.
This is how we ensure that a leader is at the forefront of public debate, driving the conversation on key issues as a point-of-reference, an authority and a thought leader.
In order to have the maximum impact on target audiences, we develop effective outreach strategies that leverage relevant platforms and channels. Using measurable and quantifiable objectives allows us to make continuous refinements throughout the project.
- Online platforms (social media, blogs, etc.)
- Opinion and feature articles
- Editorial plan
- Individualized institutional relations: We map out the key people for the leader to build relationships with and identify which events the leader should attend.
Our approach to developing a leader’s reputation has a very clear objective: we don’t just want the leader to appear to be a standard bearer, but to be one in fact. We build the leader’s reputation based on substance, not appearance, because this is the only way that a leader can truly drive the success of the company or institution.