• Wendi Smith

Finding Your Voice

Congratulations - you’ve just become the Chief Executive Officer of your company. Exciting, and sometimes intimidating. All of a sudden you’ve become the face of everything your company represents. You are now a sub-brand of the company and are the company’s most important and influential ambassador. This may seem like a daunting task, but all you must do is Find Your Voice.

As CEO, yours is the voice your shareholders, employees and consumers want – and NEED – to hear. So establishing a firm voice and reputation is key. According to Weber Shandick in the CEO Reputation Premium: Gaining Advantage in the Engagement Era:

Global executives attribute 45% of their company’s reputation to the reputation of their CEO, on average, 50% that the CEO’s reputation will matter more to company reputation in the next few years, and 44% of their company’s market value to the reputation of their CEO.

Establishing your reputation has the potential to attract investors, create positive media attention, bring in new employees, and more. So how do you figure out what to say and how to say it? Here are three ways to help you achieve your goals.

  • Establish your values and stick to them. You’ve made it to the top of the corporate ladder on your strengths and abilities, so take some time to observe yourself and learn. What about you got you to the top? Was there something constant that always guided you along the way? What are you willing to give up and what is non-negotiable? Knowing these core decisions will help you establish who you are and what you stand for.

  • Find a niche. What is the thing that makes you stand out from other leaders and competitors? At 12 years old, Elon Musk discovered his talent for computer programming. He discovered early on what would set him apart from others, so he stuck with it and never looked back. Now he is one of the most successful CEOs of our generation.

  • Be passionate. It is always easy to see when someone does not love what they are doing. So show you care. 

Discovering a sense of self is a long, but necessary journey we all must make. Once you find your voice your company and you will shine.

“You cannot dream yourself into a character; you must hammer and forge yourself one.” – James A. Froude

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