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Collaborating Across Companies on Thought Leadership | Jeanne de Cervens, Brian Forbes, Surya Kolluri

Collaborating Across Companies on Thought Leadership | Jeanne de Cervens, Brian Forbes, Surya Kolluri

Tackling Large Challenges by Coming together Across Organizations to Create Thought Leadership.

An interview with Jeanne de Cervens, Brian Forbes, Surya Kolluri about how they have worked together with their organizations to do research and approach topics too big for any one group to handle.

When an issue is too important and too big for a single leader or team member to own?
How can massive organizations tackle challenging issues in a manner that is beneficial to society?

Our three guests in this episode are Surya Kolluri, Jeanne de Cervens, and Brian Forbes. They join us to discuss their critically important study: The Pandemic’s Perfect Storm. This study examines COVID-19’s impact on Gen Z and Millennials, and delivers some surprising results.

Surya Kolluri is the Managing Director at Bank of America, where he structures and leads their Thought Leadership, with a focus on retirement, longevity and social impact.

Jeanne de Cervens is a public policy strategist and advocate, with a deep understanding of complex legislation and regulations. In the past, she has worked at both Transamerica and currently works with Georgetown University.

Brian Forbes is the current Director of Thought Leadership and Strategy at Transamerica. He oversees that organization’s research and sales enablement programs, and focuses on healthcare costs, caregiving, and retirement.

Cross Collaboration

Our three guests recall how they crossed paths within various research groups and institutions before coming together to examine the impact of the pandemic. They discuss the population groups that are most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, and give us their insights about ways to position thought leadership to better serve the people who are most affected.

Our guests explain why large corporations are collaborating on these issues, and why society’s interests outweigh the need for prestige or monetary gains. Previously established relationships between organizations allow for broader teamwork, and create more leverage for the message. Next, we shed light on the ways Bank of America and Transamerica sponsored the work being done at Georgetown University. This study, and its success, would not have been possible if our guests had not previously established a relationship between themselves.

Further, we discuss the importance of building relationships with individuals from other industries who share our passions. This can bring a myriad of viewpoints to the table, benefitting society as a whole. Collaboration can increase the credibility of a project, allowing it to reach a wider audience.

If you want your organization to be more collaborative, this episode is for you! We chat about how to find solid, inter-corporational partners, ways to create mutually beneficial engagements, and how to make an impact on topics too big for one person to take on alone.

Three Key Takeaways

  • How Thought Leadership collaboration can create solutions that reach beyond a single organization.
  • Successful Thought Leadership needs to include establishing and nurturing relationships outside your organization.
  • Ways that thought leaders can go beyond research, and bring effective, meaningful results to your constituents.

Join the Organizational Thought Leadership Newsletter to learn more about expanding thought leadership within your organization! This monthly newsletter is full of practical information, advice, and ideas to help you reach your organization’s thought leadership goals.

And if you need help scaling organizational thought leadership, contact Thought Leadership Leverage!

Listen on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts!


Bill Sherman What happens when the thought leadership challenge is larger than any one team or even a whole organization can get their hands around when you can’t do it alone? You need to recruit others to help you. So, today I sit down with three people to talk about the power of relationships and cross collaboration in the world of thought leadership.

Bill Sherman Here with me today I have Jeanne de Cervens, who is the project director for the Business for Impact Aging Well Hub at the Georgetown University McDonough School of Business.

Bill Sherman Additionally, I have Brian Forbes, who is director of Thought, Leadership and Strategy A Transamerica.

Bill Sherman And returning to the podcast is Surya Kolluri, Managing Director of Thought Leadership for Retirement and Personal Wealth Solutions at Bank of America.

Bill Sherman We’re going to talk about actual collaboration of thought leadership projects, as well as broader context for thought leadership practitioners. I’m Bill Sherman and this is Leveraging Thought Leadership. Ready? Let’s begin. Welcome to the show, everyone. This is a bit of a special show in that we have three guests. Jeanne, welcome to the show and tell us a little bit about where you sit in the world of thought leadership.

Jeanne de Cervens Sure. Well, thank you so much, Bill, for this opportunity. I am project director at the Georgetown University’s Aging Well Hub School, and Aging Well Hub sits within the School of Business at Georgetown. We focus on harnessing the power and creative thinking of multi-sectors on significant issues related to healthy and active aging and really focus on financial and health security, intersection, and connected communities.

Bill Sherman Thank you. Now, Brian, where do you sit when it comes to thought leadership?

Brian Forbes Hey, Bill, thanks as well for having me on here. I’m the Director of Thought Leadership with – with Trans America. And what that means for us is where we’re looking at opportunities to better serve our customers and our clients. And that can be obviously our end customers as we try to understand what type of challenges individuals are going to be facing now, now, next five years. And as much as we can project accurately down the road and as well as the individuals that we wholesale through some sense of financial advisors, brokers, plan sponsors that we work with is trying to have a better understanding again of the different changes shifts, the pressures, the opportunities and the challenges that they’re going to be faced.

Bill Sherman Fantastic. Thank you, Brian. Now, Surya, you’ve been a guest on the show before. Welcome back. And I would love to recap for those who may not remember our conversation from last time. Where do you see in the world of thought leadership for Bank of America.

Surya Kolluri Bill, it must have gone well the first time you are having me back, so appreciate the opportunity to talk to you again. So I’m with Bank of America and I’m in the retirement business, and I lead the thought leadership efforts there. And much like Brian pointed out, we are very much focused on our customers lives and in our case, and I’m sure this is the case with Brian as well. We have both institutional clients, Bill, and individual clients. So, some of the research that we do, you know, some get into the institutional side and some credit to the individual side. But in all cases, we are focused on topics like financial wellness. We’re focused on topics like longevity and life stages. And so I’m very happy to bring all those kinds of investigations and insights to our conversation here today.

Bill Sherman So this start is a really good opening point. All three of you in terms of thought leadership, have a passion around the financial security, financial well-being, longevity. But you’re sitting in different chairs at different organizations, and it’s not the just out of serendipity. The three of you are here today, but you’ve known each other. And where I want to take this conversation is about the cross organizational side of thought leadership. So how do you tackle? What I would describe – to borrow from Jim Collins – as the big, hairy, audacious goal; transforming the way that people think about financial security and financial stability is an ambitious project. One individual can’t solve it and organize a single organization probably can’t solve it. So, let’s talk about the cross-collaboration. I know you’ve done work together in different ways. I want to start with the most recent project, which was the millennial study. So, let’s start there and let’s use that as a springboard into collaboration.

Jeanne de Cervens I can kick it off. So at the Georgetown Aging Well Hub, we’ve worked with both Transamerica and Bank of America on various projects as sponsors, case studies, journey maps, calculators. And we’re in the midst of the pandemic and talking about, OK, what? What are the attitudes of consumers, both in terms of how they feel about their employer, their workforce, financial security? We know they’re moving back in with their parents and really to help the organizations figure out how you respond to these consumers, especially the younger consumers millennials who aren’t so young anymore and Gen Z really learn more about what they’re thinking now in terms of their attitudes towards finances, debt, a myriad of things and looking at where they are now. And so we talked to Bank of America and Transamerica, and both were really excited about having this, this work.

Bill Sherman OK, so that’s a good foundation. There’s a research study for the – on millennials and how they’re responding in terms of financial security to the pandemic. Someone’s identified a research question and maybe a hypothesis or two there, but we’ve got to actually get the study funded and backed. I’d like to start with you, Brian, in terms of how did you and Transamerica get pulled into this project?

Brian Forbes And that’s a great question. And one thing I’ll just say, and I think it’s probably everyone understands, is when they’re talking about thought leadership and especially for the work that we do in Surya as well. And that’s where our paths always crossed with the different research groups and institutions that we work with. And it’s so important to us. So, we have a ton of our own research. We have our own data that we can look at, we can source and we can kind of, as you mentioned, kind of get some directional ideas and some opposite. But finding like Georgetown and others, it can really help us put this together. Do a lot of the work, frankly, but also, you know, give us their expertise and so valuable to us when we talk about how it’s how it’s received by the individuals, the companies, the clients that we’re working with. So in this case, how do we get involved with it is, as Jeanne mentioned, we had kind of had an ongoing relationship doing a lot of work around caregiving, which is another important initiative, which is certainly a sub topic within that longevity discussion. That’s so fascinating. But for us, it was, you know, as you can imagine, as cope, it’s going on. Everyone’s looking for what is the next thing, right? What is going on and what can we learn from this, this this moment in time and again, it was always stretching out longer than anyone imagined, so there was a timeliness to it. Let’s see what’s happening on to see what some of the impacts are going to be. And so for us, it was really just having discussions around what we would like to learn, what we would like to see, identifying the younger generations as potentially being the most impacted by what was going on and then trying to spin up. What does that mean for us at Trans America? We were very focused on the workplace. What does that mean to employees or participants in our vernacular? What does that mean to plan sponsors and advisors employers on the other side? So that was a fascinating thing that we wanted to better understand. So as things began to unwind, how can we position advice services or insight to help them better serve their employees?

Bill Sherman Great, thank you, Brian. Now, Surya, from Bank of America’s perspective, how did you get drawn into this project and B of A get drawn into the project?

Surya Kolluri You know, Bill, the story I’m about to tell is a story that repeats itself, and I’m sure John and Brian will have their own stories shared with other studies too. So the Brian [sic] held a caregiving conference. And Brian, you remember this and had me as a guest speaker in one of the panels. So, I was talking about our caregiving research. The entire conference was, you know, Brian and team staging a caregiving conversation. And so you can imagine this was pre-pandemic we were having a cup of coffee and were chatting about it. How can we collaborate on an important topic like this? So that was one question. And then the very next coffee was with a representative from Georgetown Aging Well Hub. He was attending the same conference and we asked the same question. And so here we were in person for a cup of coffee begin to percolate as it were. You know what we could be doing going forward? And honestly, when we were doing that, the pandemic had not yet arrived. It was the winter before the pandemic arrived. And so, we were we were getting our thoughts together. The pandemic hit and we adjusted to say, Aha, here’s a place where we can deeply ask the question with the same population of young adults on multiple fronts. Brian, talking about workplace financial life journey, etc. and how their experience of the pandemic. So, this is an example of how we take advantage of an opportunity of being together and collaborate proactively on new studies and new opportunities.

Bill Sherman Wonderful. Now I want to throw this to Brian and Jeanne, simply because I know the two of you have had a connection and a professional working relationship before this study. So maybe the two of you could talk about that connection and how that served as a Kickstarter.

Brian Forbes Absolutely. I’ll start it off again, I’ll go back to you pretty quick. So, Jeanne worked at Transamerica. I’ll let you fill in that for years, but what it once was with our governmental affairs group. And so, I mean, Transamerica, obviously extremely large. Our parent company is gone. So, we have a lot of different groups, a lot of different silos, a lot of different work going on like anyone. And so, the challenge, I think with anyone is trying to figure out how do you connect those as I always try to say, how do you connect right? Because there’s so much going on a lot of times it’s a lot of great information being poured in one in and you’re trying to figure out how can you get it to really absorb within other parts of your organization? And that’s a challenge I think all of us probably face and will continue to face for, you know, for the foreseeable future. But we knew each other from that, and I think one of the anecdotes we shared is I’m working at the great work that they’re doing. Some of the research that we’ve been doing, not just with this, but certainly research before it’s always trying to figure out is this of interest? How can you use this? What does this mean when put into your environment our ways that you can position this for, for time and attention with folks, you know, key stakeholders up on Capitol Hill or outside? And then for us, you know, how do we properly leverage? Let’s take credit for the work that’s being done among our stakeholders, and they realize that we do have, as best we can, an ear to the ground or a finger on the pulse to use cliches of the market.

Jeanne de Cervens Yeah, and I would just add to it, I agree with that, and when I was at perhaps American headed public policy. My job was part to look outside and see what was going on that affected how we looked at legislation and regulations, but also to bring that back and look at the Trans American perspective. What are we doing on these critical issues? What are other companies doing on these critical issues? Also working with our research groups to really figure out what is going on and how we can help our clients in these issues, fit and healthy and active aging and financial security. It’s larger than any one company it is and the area I believe of thought leadership. Just like public policy and research, it is really a shared obligation to understand what’s going on coming around the corner. How can we respond? How can we help all of our customers deal with a lot of these huge demographic changes, et cetera?

Bill Sherman So all three of you work within larger institutions and organizations. Let’s talk about the internal sort of domain and audience for thought leadership. How did this study spread and how was it used internally by each group? So you agreed to join forces? That’s great. You answered some research questions, but the end of the day in my mind, thought leadership needs to be applied, put to use for the people who need to know the information that it can act on today. Right. So how do you put it to use Surya? Let’s start with you.

Surya Kolluri Bill Eppler, too happy to answer the question, because we’ve been very busy with it, we are so attracted to the insights of the study that we have shared widely in and describe that. But I was wondering if there was another question that really slip as well, which is why would we want to collaborate on a study like this? Why would he do it on his own? Because it has access to the data? Why would Brian run the study of his own? Why would we want to collaborate? Because you could imagine many other circumstances where people say, Hey, we are going to go on or our own way because the study we can do on our own. So at least for me, the motivation was that the subject is so large that, you know, it’s really a social good that we want to get this message on the inside to the largest possible audience beyond America’s reach, beyond Transamerica reach, including Georgetown. That’s a big reach to get the study out. So that’s kind of one second. You can imagine what could slip into a solutions and product mode, right? But if you look at the work that we have done together, it’s stopped short of that. If it’s pure thought leadership, it’s pure insight. It’s pure what’s happening to this generation. And then, of course, as a subsequent ability and conversation, you could attach Transamerica solutions to it or Bank of America solutions to it. So it stopped short of that, which allows us to collaborate because the moment you start talking about products and solutions, you start putting walls up. So we stop. So those are two that appeal to me and our organization to allow us to flatter.

Bill Sherman Well, and you also answer a question there of how do you make that work of where do you put that boundary right? Because it would be easy to step on toes or have different teams. Look at this and say, Oh, but why did you collaborate with them when you could have asked us for this information? I’d love to hear from Brian or Jeanne. What was the – the why from your side on collaboration?

Jeanne de Cervens Brian, jump in?

Brian Forbes Yeah, I’ll jump in. I was going to say, Surya made some great points, and I wholeheartedly agree with that greater good standpoint. Now I can tell you that that when it comes to research, you’re always going to have people with an organization and sometimes individuals that are just going to say, we want to own that. So if it’s something worth doing, we should own it as much as possible. Right. So it can truly be from. We don’t share it because in some minds, a sharing is a dilution of the impact of for. But as you talk about, this subject is so large and here we are. In a global pandemic, when it was happening, it seemed a little myopic to say, Well, we want to own this little bit. There is just great work that needed to be done and it needs to be done at speed. I think there’s relationship aspect I would add in there as well. I mean, you already we’ve already touched on there’s a personal relationship with the three of us sitting here together. We’ve known each other in different instances. We’ve been a part of our different conferences. We’d ask Surya to speak. I think there was a second time we’d ask Surya to speak at one of our major symposiums. So there is that personal relationship, and as you continue to talk about these things, you start to see alignment of thought and purpose of what you’re trying to accomplish. But then there’s a business side, right? There’s, you know, as we started to push this out into our internal audiences, I’m never cease. It never ceases to amaze me how folks will use it. And what I mean by that is maybe a small part of the business. Yes, they’re driven by, you know, their numbers and what they’re trying to accomplish. And they look at this say, Well, this is fantastic. I have some contacts or some associates over there with serious companies that are going to say, I bet they didn’t even know that we collaborate. I they know that we’re working together. This is a great sign of our that we can show. This is a great example, almost. I want to say good faith, but just show this, you know, hey, we’re doing this together here. Why don’t we do these? You know this, this and this together over here? So there’s a lot of ways that this works for organizations and leverage, right? And for us to answer the question. We’re still working on finding that perfect solution for how do we get this into the hand of so many different constituents or stakeholders involved? And that’s I think that’s a and that’s something a code I’ve not yet cracked.

Bill Sherman Well, and it was a loaded question in the sense of it’s a huge audience when you say, OK, we’ve got every millennial, potentially in North America or the world, how do you reach them? There’s not one single, you know, W-millennial radio that everybody tunes into, right? So how do you reach them with the information through the channels that they get information from and people that they trust? Jeanne, talk to me a little bit about Georgetown’s perspective and collaborating with Bank of America and Transamerica.

Jeanne de Cervens Sure. Well, you know, I’ve known both Brian and Surya for a number of years. Both the Bank and Transamerica are really done such a tremendous job and looking at the customer and what are the customer needs and orient in all of their business to meeting the customer’s needs. So it is, you know, I think they both they both think alike in that respect, have different businesses, are also partners in business. So they’re great sponsors to this study.

Bill Sherman If you are enjoying this episode of Leveraging Thought Leadership, please make sure to subscribe. If you’d like to help spread the word about the podcast, please leave a five star review and share it with your friends. We are available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and all major platforms, as well as at Leveraging Thought Leadership dot com.

Bill Sherman I want to dwell on the importance of relationships and how essential they are for a thought leadership practitioner, especially as a head of thought leadership, curating good ideas within the organization and then looking beyond the organization, using this case study and other times where you’ve collaborated together. Where have you learned? How to collaborate effectively and what have you learned? So imagine we’ve got a colleague here that’s looking to do more collaboration. What should they be looking for in opportunities? Go ahead, Brian.

Brian Forbes That’s a great question. You know, I think that there is from what I’ve seen in my time here, there’s a lot of different ways that people can approach that, right? Just a small sampling of individuals. There’s some that are you see their names in a lot of different conferences when things were not normal kind of flow. You see them in all the events. So there’s a lot of getting out in, you know, just kind of the classic relationship building and mingling in the right place, right? So just be where the individuals are. And that’s a great way to start up networking and relationships. I don’t do as much of that. And so to me, it’s been really tricky with a lot of due diligence, the right relationships. And what I mean by that, again, I know that’s subjective, but picking relationships that have a pretty broad reach and a broad network of their own, if you can kind of immediately tap into. And that’s been something that’s been very effective for us. It’s we always are kind of left with the punch above your weight kind of mantra that served us well is for me to get into those environments and get to know those people. And it becomes the second or third introduction down the line. But then I think again, it’s just it’s, you know, it always comes back to the individuals that you talk relationship. And I think what you have here and you’ve touched on several times is there’s folks here that think a lot alike, individuals that really have a passion for what they’re doing and what their organizations are doing. And that’s magnetic, right? And you find ways to work. I mean, with Georgetown that came through somebody that know relationship with our work within our organization that, you know, put me in touch with Jeanne’s predecessor. And we talked regularly for a long time with really doing not a lot coming out of it. That didn’t lead to some work on caregiving. And then we did a calculator. Jeanne had mentioned some other things, and then this kind of came about. And again, the last thing as we talked about it at the speed that this kind of came about right is we’re kind of trying to figure out what’s going on a pandemic without those background, without that backgrounds, relationships in place, we probably wouldn’t have gotten this done at the rate that we did. We were able to get on phone calls, hash out questions, get everything done and through our relative term and compliance, all those things. I think it happened pretty quick because we have done a lot of groundwork.

Bill Sherman So Surya, going back to your sequential cups of coffee. It sounds like you’re keeping an eye out for connections, and I know you enjoy making connections. What are you looking for in these sort of partnerships and collaboration opportunities? What what advice would you offer?

Surya Kolluri Yeah, there are two kinds of collaboration that that I observe. First is internal collaboration, so Transamerica is a huge organization with many divisions. Georgetown is a massive university with many divisions. Bank of America is a huge corporation. So, you know, I live in the retirement business so I could be cocooned, saying, I’m going to do things that are kind of great. Whereas I could spend a lot of effort to collaborate with other internal partners, which is an equal amount of work as much as external. So, so that’s one point. The second point is external collaboration, which is, you know, the example that we see here today and many others that I kind of inculcate and cultivate the motivation also should be, I think, a little bit of humility that we should carry, which is better. There are some subjects that, you know, if it’s very financial, maybe we have a good shot at it. But if it’s beyond financial and psychological, if it’s behavioral, if it is generational, if it is life stage, then we ought to lean on expertise to bring better insight. So, for example, leaning on the aging, well, Georgetown brings that insight. So having that humility, that open mind also helps, I think.

Bill Sherman And you touched on a beautiful point there in terms of the leadership, I’ll get to you in a moment. And one of the things about this is the more you know of your subject, the more you can say those things are not my areas of expertise. And you can appreciate those who are experts in that. So Jeanne, from the George outside,

Jeanne de Cervens I think it’s all about, you know, as Mr. – Brian – said, it’s the continuing conversation. It’s asking the questions, getting different perspectives, and we know each other, so we have trust in each other. There’s credibility based on the work that we all have done. And I agree getting other industries at the table is also huge because you look at things from different vantage point. I did this on my own. I could have tens of conversations in my head and do a lot of work, but it would be one sided. So we need to get many different perspectives to the table, many different areas, expertise to really work on some of these major issues and drive really to drive innovation and solutions that are measurable and can be implemented.

Bill Sherman When you run the risk of if you only come from one perspective, you may be right, but also myopic. Mm-Hmm. And that requires to Surya’s point, a huge amount of humility where you could know everything in the world that needs to be known on one fraction of the problem. But you’ve only described the elephant’s tail.

Brian Forbes And go ahead. I was just going to say we’re going to go a step further, you could be completely right and even have to use your analogy of the entire elephant. But still, people are going to look at you as an organization or an institution and say, Well, OK, am I going to take everything that they say full stop, right? Or, you know, that’s where we bring that analysis to the table. All of us, right? There’s a halo effect. You know, people want to see what do looked at this. Who else is working with this rating to kind of be able to give you a little bit of that kind of a, you know, a bigger kind of offering to folks where they go, OK, so this isn’t just coming from Transamerica. OK, now it’s an institution. This makes a lot of sense, and I think that that makes it much more. I want to use word palatable, but I think that that definitely helps you climb a wall with individuals and maybe say, you know, I don’t want to reach out to one group tell.

Bill Sherman So one of the things that stands out to me is not only the creation of thought leadership, but the distribution of thought leadership is highly dependent on relationships. Who do you know? And how can you use those relationships to help create influence and take ideas to scale? Or in this case of this study that we’ve been talking about making something that people probably felt but didn’t have data on make that visible and quantified? Right? And so where I find a lot of passion is seeing the moments of cross collaboration where people say we can tackle a bigger problem together than we can individually. Like to turn to each of you with an opportunity for closing thoughts or recommendations on collaboration connection, we’ve covered a lot of ground.

Brian Forbes Brian, what do you think? This mind I’m – my – a lot of places that I would say one of the things that I feel has benefited me is, you know, and sometimes it strings you out a little bit far, you know, where I sit within our stations, an enterprise function. So we have two dominant sides of our house or individual side in our workplace. So the work I do is to try to work both sides of that. There’s things I can go across both. That’s great at something like this case is very focused on one part of our business in that, and that’s OK as well. So with that, we try to be up to speed on a variety of topics, right? And sometimes there’s a really neat idea, but the timing is not right. So that’s one of the biggest things I understand in the timing of situations. And sometimes you’re just kind of waiting or you’ve got a couple of small pieces and maybe on their own, they’re not enough to really put the resources and time behind it to push it out. But maybe if there is something else to come along and kind of put it together, now you’ve got some momentum, now you’ve got a bigger discussion or something. So I would say for me, it’s. Having that kind of general as much as I can stay in touch with everything. And then when these things happen, is then being able to quickly reach out to again a research partner or someone like Surya or somewhere where you say, Hey, look, here’s an idea. Remember this? And if we put this and this this together now, we might have something that’s kind of unique and different. This gives it something that’s kind of got a nice glow with the we’re excited about. And, you know, internally, that can take on many aspects. We talked about this people that are focused on product circumvention, and that’s fine. So there’s things that sometimes you’ve got to understand is it does it present? An opportunity to discuss something around the topic if we don’t do thought leadership directly tied to a product. Or is there opportunities for us to talk about something that maybe you didn’t think in a lot of financial advisers are talking about now, but it’s definitely something that should be and will be on their plate in the next coming years.

Bill Sherman Wonderful. Jeanne, what’s going through your head around collaboration relationships as we begin to wrap up?

Jeanne de Cervens All right. I think it’s just getting a myriad of viewpoints and perspectives at the table, credible people around the table. And because in driving any solutions, you’re not, one answer is going to work for everyone. So you really need to have everyone at the table to have something that’s workable and coming to the table with questions, not answers.

Bill Sherman And Surya?

Surya Kolluri You know, up to this point, we’ve talked about collaborating to create content, but there’s also the. Are you fulfilling on the mission? Are you taking this out to your constituents and in various combinations? The three of us have done so. So, for example, Brian and I supported John doing a blog post at the Wharton Business School’s Secure Retirement blog post, which was very well received. We have done industry conferences where we presented insights of this together, of fairly premium industries that attract a lot of senior stakeholders internally to our own associate networks, to our own clients who are taking this out. So this study has been so timely and so insightful that it kind of delivered itself. We just had to find the doors, opened the doors and offered well, because as young adult populations are coming into the workforce, senior executives want to know what’s on those young adult populations minds. What kind of benefits should it be offering? What kind of career pathway? So it’s been it’s been very timely and very well received. I’m delighted to say,

Bill Sherman And as we close my thought it would be, it becomes obvious to me. And you’ve emphasized it, but I want to underline it here. The relationships that you need as a thought leadership practitioner are ones that you need to build in advance of when the time you want to deploy them. It is very hard to move at speed if you don’t have those relationships in place. And so look for people who are interested in similar topics as you. And instead of looking at them as competitors look to see where you can collaborate, see where their interests align with yours. I think we need to leave it there for today. Jeanne, Brian, Syria Thank you very much for joining us. Thank you.

Brian Forbes Thank you. Thank you.

Bill Sherman If you’re interested in organizational thought leadership, then I invite you to subscribe to the OrgTL Newsletter. Each month we talk about the people who create, curate and deploy thought leadership on behalf of their organizations. Go to the website and choose Join our newsletter. I’ll leave a link to the website as well as my LinkedIn profile in the show notes. Thanks for listening, and I look forward to hearing what you thought of the show.

Bill Sherman works with thought leaders to launch big ideas within well-known brands. He is the COO of Thought Leadership Leverage. Visit Bill on Twitter

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