By default, all CEOs have to deliver an impressive bottom line. What makes you unique?
Not by learning a new management buzzword, but simply by focusing on who you are and what you believe in. That is your unique personality.
Two Unique Examples
Take Steve Jobs (yes – again!). As CEO, Jobs added value to Apple by making clever decisions and by building a strong team. But Jobs added even more value through the person he was. He shaped our perception of Apple in every product presentation and interview he did. You felt his passion, his temper, his values and his dreams and all of this shaped Apple the company in your mind. Then take Richard Branson (again!). As chairman, he adds great value to the Virgin Group by setting directions and by hiring top people. Yet he probably adds more value through his adventurous spirit which forms the essence of the Virgin brand as well as the core of the company’s culture.
The good news are that you can also add great value to your company through your personality and by continuously demonstrating that in your online presence.
Here is how your Online Presence adds value to your Company
1. Bottom line impact
In general, Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk gets attention because he has invested in building his position as a character, thought leader and outstanding businessman. Then in early 2013, he stunned the media by this tweet: “NY Times article about Tesla range in cold is fake. Vehicle logs tell true story that he didn’t actually charge to max & took a long detour”. This frontal confrontation demonstrated his confidence in the Tesla product. But more importantly, his bluntness gave confidence to his R&D, sales and marketing teams. The question is not if he has added value to Tesla’s bottom line. But how much.
2. Cultural impact
PR firm Edelman’s CEO, Richard Edelman, told the following story in his 6 a.m. blog: “I will never forget a senior Edelman executive telling me the story of a large foreign client visiting my dad in Chicago to congratulate him on winning his account. In the course of the conversation, the client asked for a 5 percent commission for “delivering” the business to Edelman. My father raised his voice, got deeply red and said, “Get out of my office before I kick you in the pants. You have some nerve coming in here shaking me down. We are a professional firm and you insult me deeply”.
Do you think his staff still need to read “integrity” in the company handbook to get the core values that shape the company culture?
3. Social impact
With approximately 50,000 employees in Virgin Group, Richard Branson seldom, if ever, mentions management, system or structure in his online presence. Instead, he highlights unknown heroes, sparks off discussions about entrepreneurship, highlights adventurous events and reveals all kinds of unusual things he undertakes. You may think that he is over-exposed in the digital sphere. You may question his authencity as he has an army of staffs to take care of his online presence. But you can’t deny that his online persona has positioned Virgin as a top-of-mind company and personally, Branson has touched hearts across continents and encouraged 1000’s of people to believe in and pursue their dreams.
Share your CEO heroes in a comment below. How do their personalities add value to their companies? What about yourself?
Check on the 7 reasons to Invest In a Strong CEO Online Profile.