Way before Covid-19, disruption at work and in our lives had been lengthily debated on due to the innovations introduced by the digital age. For generation Xers like me, adapting to the digital age had already been an ordeal. Now, working mostly through digital means is the new normal for most of us. Being the Managing Director of Flair Image Consultancy, I had no choice other than to lead the way in migrating our image and self-development training and coaching services to the digital platform starting with our Adapting to the New Normal webinar series in 2020.
Besides the digital shift, Covid-19 has compelled us to refashion our behavior such as observing health protocols and working remotely from home. Moreover, it has awakened our social quotient and desire to help, in our own capacity, those most vulnerable and affected by this health and financial crisis. In effect, Covid-19 has compelled us to reinvent and repurpose ourselves.
Thus, for us leaders, this reinvention and repurposing involve recreating our leadership branding. What is leadership branding in the first place? It is how we are perceived as leaders: our leadership style, presence, and image. Leadership branding is leveling up personal branding. Our Leadership Branding can be distinguished through our Individuality and Talents, Positioning, and Credibility. For instance, we could be known as a Thought Innovator or a People Person. Given this pandemic, it is high time to reassess how our leadership branding could evolve and be relevant.
Here are some traits to consider in creating leadership branding:
Ability to Shift Mindset – We cannot be stuck with the way we used to do things for our businesses and organizations. Besides migrating to online platforms, we leaders must reevaluate our significance and impact of our organizations. As a response to the global travel restrictions, we salute Sec. Bernadette Romulo Puyat in leading the Department of Tourism to be all out in promoting local tourism and assuring the safety of the travel destinations.
Relatability – We need more compassion and empathy to relate to our team. Compassion is the ability to sympathize with those who suffer; whereas, empathy is the capacity to feel and understand what another person is experiencing. Empathy is knowing how to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes. We could reach out to each one and show sincere concern in this time of crisis.
Optimism – According to Simon Sinek in his article on LinkedIn entitled An Optimist’s View Goinginto 2021, “Optimism is not blind positivity nor naïve. It is the ability to see the good in the face of the bad. It is the practice of looking for the silver-linings in any cloud.” Once we achieve winning the confidence of our people, we can help them cope with their work and concerns. We need to be very encouraging to transmit optimism. A leader must inspire and be a cheerleader!
For us leaders, recreating our leadership branding is the way to cruise through this crisis. Let’s begin now to redefine our game plan to be relevant in the new normal and beyond!
About the Writer
Ginny Villegas, AICI CIC, is the Managing Director of Flair Image Consultancy and President of the Association of Image Consultants International (AICI) Philippine Chapter. For queries, contact email@example.com.