Most sophisticated professional services providers, such as lawyers, consultants, and accountants, aspire to be thought of as thought leaders. Thought leaders grab attention. They shape the narrative. Their ideas drive action. And their reputations lead to business opportunities. They’re trusted, admired, and sought after.
The moniker of thought leadership cannot be bought, it must earned through hard work. The work primarily involved in becoming a thought leader is the sharing of compelling, interesting, and opinion-shifting insights in the marketplace of ideas. Some thought leaders write. Others speak. Most do both.
Thought leaders come in all shapes and sizes—from bombastic, colorful extroverts most comfortable on stage, to the introverts among us who prefer the quiet solitude of a keyboard and a cup of coffee.