Social, Cloud, Mobile and Big Data are disrupting life as we know it.. To manage this we must adapt our skill sets… To be more like a cheerleader!
CEO’s of today come in all shapes, sizes and ages wearing anything from a black V-neck to a hoodie to a dress. As unique as CEO’s the physical appearance are, so are the paths and adventures they took to get to that role..
Your First Impression….. Your Resume…. Your Reputation… It not only precedes you but it lives in digital form for the world to see. Your personal brand must have a digital presence
In one of my favorite blog posts: Hello, It’s Nice to Meet you…Again: Your Digital Reputation Precedes You by Brian Solis, Brian refers to the 5 V’s of Social Engagement which I feel are very important! This quote from Brian is something I have focused on since reading his post as well:
“The value you assign to engagement affects what you place and take out of this so-called digital life. The value we take away must only be surpassed by what we invest. This is the foundation for your digital legacy.” — Brian Solis
When you think about the mobile connected, socially engaged, digital world that we live in today it is amazing to me that people don’t “Google their name” 5 times a day. With these innovative technologies come plenty of advantages and also disadvantages although I will argue the disadvantages are mostly due to people being scared of change..
Within this social connected community that we play in today we have the ability to share our voice, random habits and TMI pictures with the world by simply clicking send..
Many will argue that with the invention of the internet people were connecting & sharing with a click of a button…. Yes they are correct but in the real-time, data driven world we live in.. executives, brands, celebrities and even politicians are realizing that they must be involved in the social conversations or they won’t be heard at all. This in fact is the most exciting result of social media…
“Leaders are now being held accountable for their actions! The bullies and the liars are becoming exposed as social and digital require us to be more transparent, more real, more human than ever before..”
So back to these Cheerleaders… What characteristics do Cheerleaders share with the new “Social CEO…”
Passionate: (Cheerleaders want to inspire their fans)
Passion is the fuel that makes people believe, it makes others want to help you, it gives people a cause & belief that will create ambassadors and evangelists! CEO’s must share that passion and focus that passion on the customers experiences!
Selfless: (Every Cheer must be in sync)
Great leaders understand the importance of hiring and surrounding themselves with people smarter and better than themselves.. In this digital world that often means promoting and empowering others personal brands so much that they leave to do bigger and better things… This is a scary thought but if you want to surround yourself with the best you have to give the best a reason to be on your team.
Inspiration to Others: (Cheerleaders are promoting those on the field!)
Social is filled and polluted with Self Promotion & message blasting personalities but thankfully for us we have the ability to Unfollow them, mute them and in other words turn them off. But like @GaryVee says in his book Jab Jab Jab, Right Hook… We must give, give some more and then give some more before asking for anything in social. The best way to do this is to promote and cheer on others.. create relationships with people that share a similar vision. Focus on solving a problem for your customers and creating great experiences!
“If you build a great experience, customers tell each other about that.” — Jeff Bezos, Amazon
Team player (Can’t do a Cheer pyramid by yourself)
The CEO’s message, marketing and vision are no longer controlled and delivered through ads and press releases rather its conveyed by every engagement, interaction and conversation had with any employee or customer of that CEO’s company. With that in mind the CEO must convey
StoryTeller: (Cheerleaders use body & voice to tell a story)
Todays consumer now more than ever is educated and connected and grabbing their attention is becoming harder and harder. For CEO’s it is no longer about sharing their story or company story with the board members its about creating content, giving a Ted talk, relating and humanizing your brand, your story, so consumers will care enough to give you their attention.
Transparent: (They have nothing to hide, they put it all out there)
Authenticity, loyalty, respect are goals leaders strive to deliver each day. Today CEO’s can’t hide in offices or isolate themselves from the company, rather they must find ways to relate and show vulnerability to connect with the consumer. Transparency eliminates the barrier many consumers already have for brands, leaders and CEO’s by changing the conversation from “we don’t trust them” to “They have nothing to hide so why wouldn’t we trust them.”
Connected (We know who were the best at gossiping in high school)
CEO’s have been embracing the idea of feedback and data more of recent times but that is longer cutting it. In todays real-time, data-driven world the CEO must be able to predict outcomes and trends by communicating and engaging with the community and social employees they are trying to keep happy.
Communicator (Cheerleaders are great at conveying a message & even spelling it out for their audience)
Technology and software are changing the way we communicate in exciting new ways but as we all know so well certain methods of communication like email have nuances and limitations that don’t exist with normal face to face interactions. For the CEO they need to focus less on the tools & software and more on the Human to Human Relationships of employees, customers and the industry*TweetThis(Must read @BryanKramer #H2H Book). It is amazing how inspiring and motivating it can be for an employee to get a tweet or comment from the CEO on social media.
Optimistic (No matter the score Cheerleaders don’t change their tone)
CEO’s can no longer hide from bad news or security breaches they must take these things head on while conveying to their employees and customers an outcome that is positive. I am not saying every CEO must forecast numbers for the next quarter based on optimism rather the CEO be the face of optimism for the brand so the social employees and customer evangelists continue believing.
Agile (Someone falls there is no time to stop the cheer!)
Agility! A personal favorite as I believe to disrupt the status quo, be innovative and change the world you not only have to embrace change but you must have the ability to teach others how and why to change. Today’s CEO must have an agile way of adapting their business model, strategy and vision to stay one step ahead of the changing world around us.
Happy (How often do you see a cheerleader not smiling)
Ok this one might get some people shaking their heads because we know that Steve Jobs a personal idol of mine wasn’t happy everyday and in many ways was a jerk to many people. But in today’s connected, community and culture focused companies CEO’s must understand that Happiness is what this generation measures as being successful not just job title and salary. Therefore the CEO must create and lead a culture that increases happiness of the employees and leadership so they convey that same happiness to the customers… @Buffer a company who is breaking the mold of what it means to be a transparent company has the motto: “Powered by Happiness” (See my blog post:“Why your Startup, must be powered by Happiness”
What do Great Cheerleaders & CEO’s have in common, They are: Passionate, Selfless, Inspire Others, StoryTellers, Transparent, Connected, Communicators, Optimistic, Agile and Happy..
Do you want to be a CEO? Are you a CEO? Ask Yourself do I have the cheerleading skills to be successful in this new age of change?
“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take” — Gretzky #99