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Leading with Ideas, Not Follower Count

🔍 Podcast host, Dillon Barr of Speaker Mastermind recently posed the question: What does being a thought-leader mean to you? Today, I want to delve deeper into that question and share my perspective.

Let's face it, the online space is overly saturated with self-proclaimed gurus, their content heavy on personal branding and light on actionable advice. You watch their stories, and you can't help but wonder: is this about the ideas or about the influencer?

This very question forms the core elements of my approach to thought-leadership. In the Instagram story, I emphasize:

Being a thought-leader is really not about me as the person speaking the thoughts or the's really about other people gravitating to my energy and seeing where they can take that piece of wisdom or insight into their own lives. It's not about others trying to follow me per se.”

The "We" Approach

The focus here isn't on me standing on a pedestal, dictating knowledge. It's about sparking ideas, igniting conversations, and providing tools that enable you to navigate your own paths. It's a collaborative dance, not a one-sided lecture.

Traditional leadership models often prioritize the leader, demanding a devoted following. But what if we flipped the script? What if true leadership is about fostering a community of empowered individuals, each blazing their own trail?

This is the philosophy I strive for. Ultimately, it's about the collective journey. We learn from each other, share experiences, and apply insights to our unique circumstances. That's where the magic truly happens.

Ideas Take Center Stage

As I mentioned in the Instagram story:

"I've interviewed ‘thought-leaders,’ and they always lead with the information rather than leading with how the information has influenced their own lives.

When the ideas take center stage, they can resonate with diverse audiences on a deeper level. It's not about me dictating what you should think, it's about providing a springboard for your own exploration.

So, how do we translate this philosophy into action? Here are some of my guiding principles:

🎯 Find Your Niche: Become an expert in a specific field where you can offer genuine and valuable insights.

📝 Develop Your Voice: Craft a clear and engaging writing style that connects with your audience.

🌐 Share Generously: Don't hold back your knowledge. Be open and authentic in your communication style.

💬 Embrace Dialogue: Foster conversations, answer questions, and actively participate in discussions.

📚 Lifelong Learner: Stay curious and keep yourself updated with the latest trends in your field and also adjacent fields.

Thought-leadership is an ongoing process, a journey of continuous exchange of ideas and energy. By prioritizing the collective good and focusing on empowering ideas, we can create a space where everyone feels seen and heard.

🚀 What are your thoughts on this reframing of thought-leadership? Share in the comments some of the challenges you face in navigating this space.

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Savio P. Clemente