I’m honoured to be able to work with some great individuals and business owners to help them learn how to use their talent/skills, experience and knowledge to build their leadership, influence and authority with their audience by creating a strong personal brand.
It is great that we are living in a world where we all equally have communication platforms at our finger tips that allow us to connect, educate and learn from each other on a day to day basis.
However, what I also discuss with my clients is the responsibility that goes along with increasing the level of power and influence you gain from putting yourself on the front line.
When we become leading authorities, it is essential that we recognise the effect that this can have on our reputation from a professional and personal level.
When in a position of leadership, power or authority, being able to build a strong reputation requires compassion, understanding and respect for what is likely to be a diverse audience who are supporting, encouraging and appreciating our views, our voice and our ability to inspire them and their ambitions equally.
It’s not difficult to see or read about how abuse of power has affected both the personal and professional lives of those who have strayed from this path of responsibility and I have no doubt that we will continue to see more in the near future.
Believing the Hype!
Some of those who reach the ‘power’ status think and act as though they are beyond reproach, doing and saying whatever they feel like without really considering the consequences, not just for those they affect, but also themselves! They get caught up in their own hype and end up playing a very dangerous and now, time limited game to say the least!
This type of behaviour especially if it becomes prolific, will only be tolerated for so long no matter how talented, skilled or ‘needed’ they think they are!
Becoming well-known in their chosen field is the ultimate accolade along with the lifestyle that goes with it. In addition, considering the time, energy and years of work that will have gone in to getting to that level, is it really worth forgetting the morals, ethics and values that must go along with that level of influence?
You only need to look at what has happened to Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, government officials, sports coaches and more recently, the Presidents Club in the UK to see the consequences of unacceptable behaviour.
We have finally reached a stage where exploitation in whichever form it takes is not only unacceptable, those affected are being encouraged and supported in speaking out and they are doing so very publicly to the detriment of the perpetrator and rightly so too!
Nothing is hidden, and past acts of unethical behaviour are coming back to haunt many of those who thought they were untouchable.
To be honest, it’s nothing new. People have been getting away with abusing their authority for longer than I care to research! What is different now though, in the ever-increasing public reputational scrutiny on social and other media.
The result, broken professional and personal relationships; criminal charges; closure of businesses and irreparable damage to reputation. So, I ask again – is it worth it? When will thinking before speaking and acting feature in understanding what is at stake for these people?
It's one thing to be full of regret after the act, but where was the responsibility before?
Responsibility vs Power
Individuals and businesses rely on building strong and trusted relationships with their audience in order to acquire the authority and influence that creates power and wealth.
Respecting and appreciating who and what got them to where they are in the first place, and treating others as they would want to be treated or how they would want their loved one to be treated is what REAL POWER is.
Creating and using a personal profile to build influence and power means responsible behaviour goes with the territory.