30 Mar Scarlet Thinking and Radiance
Radiance and Visibility as a Leadership Competency
Definition of Radiance as a competency: Radiant. Standing out in one’s organisation or industry. Being instantly recognisable, at least by name and reputation. Radiance also implies shining your light upon others and helping them shine too.
Visibility is a common buzz word of the moment and often accompanies personal branding. What’s the point, after all, if you have a strong personal brand but nobody sees it? Visibility helps create credibility… as long as you are being visible for all the right reasons. I have been working with leaders and business owners for over fifteen years and I’ve seen this happen over and over again. It is not enough to be excellent, others need to know of your abilities too.
Having radiant, visible leaders is a huge advantage to an organisation as these leaders act as ambassadors, attracting new talent, good press and positive PR. They act as beacons in an overcrowded market.
Challenges around Visibility
Radiance and Visibility themselves are interesting topics. Some people are comfortable with visibility, whilst some actively seek it. There are others, of course, who find it challenging. They may be introverts or prefer to focus upon the job and issues in front of them. Nurturing a profile may sound too much like hard work, using skills that they are unfamiliar with. It can also be uncomfortable as visibility means you are naturally in the spotlight. Your reputation, your work and your own personal brand will come under scrutiny. It can feel like a vulnerable place to be.
I’ve worked with many leaders and business owners on issues around visibility and there is always a way around this. We can make visibility feel comfortable for them, and in their own way. it doesn’t necessary have to mean that you need to become a high-profile, high energy and charismatic leader. You can be visible and yet still be yourself.
A radiant and visible leader will have:
- Built a reputation within a certain area
- Done this by being themselves (linking back to authenticity again)
- Efficacy in their field of work. Visibility always needs to be combined with ability to do the actual job for it to be effective. Otherwise it is just smoke and mirrors, something we are becoming more and more able to spot
- Been actively shining their light upon others. This can be through mentoring, or sharing the recognition with team members, for instance
- A reputation for being ethical
How can we build Radiance?
How do we become more radiant and visible?
- Decide what it is that you want to be visible around. This doesn’t have to be your specific job title. It can be an area of interest, your interpersonal relationships, or an interest in nurturing younger colleagues as examples
- Ask yourself how can I demonstrate this?
- Assess where you are happy being visible, and where you find it hard. Where are your current boundaries? You may be very comfortable chairing meetings for instance but balk at the thought of presenting at an international conference
- Know your stuff well so that you feel confident and secure in your knowledge. However, don’t use a need for further courses or studying as an excuse to stop you building a profile right now
- Look for opportunities to raise your profile. This could be anything from blogging to agreeing to organise a charity run; from taking on a key role in a project to volunteering at your industry’s professional association
- Even tweaking your social media profiles so that they all use the same (professional) photograph can work wonders for your reputation and being recognised
Questions to Ask Yourself
- Who do I admire that is already visible and has radiance?
- How have they built that reputation?
- Is there anything I can learn from this?
- What sort of reputation do I want?
- What do I need to do to build that?