Why is it important to build your expertise as a leader?
Expertise building sets the pace for your impact and influence as a leader. People begin to follow you because they are checking your content and credibility. They want to know what sets you apart from the next person in your field of expertise. You want people to automatically think about you when they are seeking information around that subject matter.
You may be asking how do I build my expertise as a leader in my lane…. The first thing you want to do is identify your areas of interests,those places where you want to position yourself as an expert. I know that there are a lot of people out here that you want to help and you want to be their go-to person but you have to narrow it down. As content experts say, if you try to serve everyone then you serve no one. For instance, one of my areas of expertise is leadership more specifically with an emphasis on identity and purpose work for leaders. Another area is black women’s mental health and self- care. If you were to see my bookshelves and Kindle, you would see a lot of books around these areas.
The second thing you want to do is create content and share your thoughts in those areas. For instance, one of your areas of interest is healthy relationship building. What are your thoughts about how to develop healthy relationships? You would share your thoughts on why relationships work and why they do not work. When you are talking about sharing your thoughts around it, it is really being able to take a view and stand on that view. So that view may be opposed to what mainstream America says about that topic, but you create content and state your thoughts around that area of expertise. You want to be able to show up and share what you think about that and what you found to be true in your journey.
Third thing to do is be consistent, be consistent in your messaging, what you are sharing and how you are sharing it. The way to position yourself as a leader in that area is to be consistent in showing up not only physically but also in your messaging. I know it can be hard to be consistent especially when life is happening around you, but you can be consistent if you post on your social media 1-2 times a week on the same day of the week at the same time people will begin looking for you. If you are consistent about sharing your message in your area, people will know that is you and they will continue to look for you.
When you are consistent, you are establishing credibility. Credibility is important because people want to know what makes you credible? They want to be able to trust that you know what you are talking about and what you are sharing is true. When you're sharing your thoughts about these subject matters and you're consistent about it, you're building credibility.
Finally, Get clear about your message and stick with it. What is the message that you want to share? As I wrote earlier, one of my areas is leadership and identity. My messaging is about owning your authentic identity and operating on purpose. I believe that when you are authentic in who you are and operate in your purpose then you are able to lead authentically. Also when you share your knowledge, skills, abilities, and practices by showing up and serving others then you are a leader. You have to stick to your message and be very clear about it. And then the last piece is put yourself out there. You have to be visible. Showing up and serving others means you can not hide in a corner in your small corner of the world. Leadership is about building your expertise and serving others with the information you have through your skills and abilities.
PS: If you are a Mental Health Professional, Coach or leader looking to build, grow and lead your brand and business, I invite you to join The Build.Grow.Lead Collective. This is a safe place for Mental Health Clinicians, Coaches and Leaders to come together.