Many of the entrepreneurs I know are committed to having a major impact on our world. Many are highly respected for their ability to move others to take action. One of my personal favorites is Richard Branson. He has used his social influence to impact many of the world’s largest challenges.
I can’t tell you there is a large number of CEOs or entrepreneurs who use social media to impact their communities. However, the entrepreneurs I know that use social media have an incredible impact on our world. For example, let’s consider Richard Branson.
Many younger entrepreneurs have discovered if you want to have immediate impact in your markets and communities, you must be willing to put yourself out there for others to see. In the past, leaders would invest significant resources to be in front of their key stakeholders. Today, social media and the many different platforms provide many entrepreneurs a leaping off point to incredible visibility and value to the causes and ideas they consider important in their lives.
Take Richard Branson, no really, take Richard. You would bet he’s the wealthiest entrepreneur in his part of the world. He’s not struggling, but his impact far outweighs almost any other entrepreneur on the planet. When I talk to highly successful people, they all want to be more like Richard Branson. Is that an accident or because he is able to do what so many of us want to do? Live his life his way.
For entrepreneurs, freedom is critical to how they measure success. How do you think Richard Branson measures his success? I’m sure it’s how he moves the needle for what he believes in. Is it because Richard writes so many great books? He writes like few other leaders. I love giving them to my up and coming entrepreneurs as gifts. It’s a manual for being a renegade in your markets. After all, who doesn’t want to influence others and have fun doing it?
He is able to tell a great story. When he shares, you feel yourself in the room with many of the world’s most influential leaders. How did he learn to be a spellbinder? I think we attribute too much of his early success in dealing with many of the world’s most fascinating entertainers is his ability to learn from and captivate others. He’s willing to be authentic and let the chips fall where they may. People are attracted to his authenticity. He’s also a great listener. But we will talk about that in a future blog.
Richard Branson also understands people want to live life as an adventure. He tells people about his many wild adventures and he gets people to want to be around him and his team. There is never a day in my life that goes by where I don’t get some message from Richard. You can learn a lot from his ability to share and make you feel bigger and bolder than you might be.
Connecting through social media is not about you, but about what you make others feel. It’s the secret of many great entrepreneurs, they shine the light on you so you can capture that fleeting moment of celebrity. Now, can we all be more like Richard Branson? Maybe, maybe not, but we can help our people enjoy their moments of fame. If you make your social media an experience, you might be amazed how many people support your goals.
Finally, Richard Branson knows that consistency is important creating trust, learned early on in his career as a publisher. Doing the unpredictable will cement your relationship to others. As we already discussed, Richard appears in several places including my inbox and social networks on a regular basis. But, when he puts on an event, he knows how to throw a party… even if it’s a virtual party. To do this he has to surround himself with great people. Not great leaders, but great people. They are very good at connecting with others.
Over the past several months his team of people has gone out of the way to make me want to share whatever they share with me. This is a gift that just keeps giving. From his charities to his special projects, all know how to get me to share with my ever growing leadership community.
I’m not sure which came first, my strong following or my strong following that is sharable with Richard Branson’s great material. I’m sure I might be sitting by my timeline waiting for the phone to ring. With his wonderful shares, I can always be the life of the party. My clients can’t get enough of Sir Richard. It’s allowed me to grow my community to over 175,000 leaders around the world who are interested in both what Richard shares, and, by extension, what’s going on in my leadership communities and our world.
It’s funny how that worked out. But it has. Richard Branson gets to be in front of the people he wants to influence on a regular basis. My clients get to be part of the adventure. There’s a wonderful triple win here for all my stakeholders. They win, we win, and his community (our world) wins from exposure to his adventure called his life.
See you next week. We will share several ideas on how leadership partnerships are evolving and how you can take advantage of these new trends to grow your business.