Thought Leader in Startups | Jody Padar

Thought Leader in Startups | Jody Padar | 403


Elevating a start-up with a high-profile thought leader.

An interview with Jody Padar about building her personal brand and using it to support a new company.

How soon should a startup start thinking about using thought leadership?

Startups usually focus on customer acquisition, building their brand, and traditional marketing, believing that thought leadership is something that would be nice to have down the road —but not a must-have out of the gate. Turns out, that’s not the best way to forge a business.

Investing in thought leadership early can propel a brand to great heights. To explore the concept, we’ve invited Jody Padar to join us. Jody is known as “The Radical CPA,” and is one of the few CPAs that has built a personal brand. She is  currently the Head of Tax Strategy and Evangelism at April, a new tax program going to market through banks.

We explore how Jody built The Radical CPA brand, starting 15 years ago when accounting, as a field, was going through major changes. She felt the tools she needed were not available, so she started blogging and writing to try to  understand the changes taking place. She quickly gained a following that agreed with her thinking, accepting her non-standard methods and innovative techniques. Plus, Jody shares her difficulties with criticism, and how being open-minded allowed her ideas to sharpen and grow.

Now that Jody is with April, we learn how her personal brand works to bring a deeper level of authority and expertise to April, defying all the expectations of a startup. In addition, her high profile plays well with potential investors, who  trust Jody as the face of a new brand.

This is an excellent conversation that illuminates personal thought leadership brands, and the power they can have when they partner with new (or experienced!) organizations.

Three Key Takeaways:
  •  It is never too early to share your opinion, take a unique stance, and start creating your own thought leadership.
  • Having an established thought leadership brand can allow you to justify higher fees and the ability to demand a premium when being acquired.
  • Thought leadership practitioners need tough skin when it comes to critics, and it is in their benefit to be open-minded and use criticism to refine their ideas.

If you need a strategy to bring your thought leadership to market, Thought Leadership Leverage can assist you! Contact us for more information. In addition, we can help you implement marketing, research, and sales. Let us help you so you can devote yourself to what you do best.

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 or reach out to Bill Sherman on Linkedin!


 


Transcript

Bill Sherman How can you accelerate the launch of a startup through thought leadership? Today I speak with Jody Pater, who built a brand as the radical CPA. She’s one of the very few CPAs who has built a brand. And Jody now serves as the head of tax strategy and evangelism at the fintech startup April. In this conversation, we’re going to talk about thought, leadership and startups. We’ll explore how she was an early hire at April because of her thought leadership and how investors perceived her coming aboard. And we’ll talk about tying thought leadership with go to market and revenue. I’m Bill Sherman. And you’re listening to Leveraging Thought Leadership. Ready? Let’s begin. Welcome to the show, Jody.

Jody Padar Awesome. Thank you for having me. I’m excited to be here.

Bill Sherman So this gives us an opportunity to talk about topics that I’ve been excited to talk about, which is thought leadership in startups and thought leadership for growth. Right. And you’ve done some amazing work. First, working with your own firm and using thought leadership as an accelerator and now being the thought leadership expert and the voice of authority within startups. So my question for you, because I’ve heard it from other people, is if we’re a small company, it’s too early to be thinking about thought leadership because we’re focused on customer acquisition. We’re talking about go to market thought. Leadership is a nice to have rather than the need to have. What would you say to that?

Jody Padar I would argue that thought leadership is more important than all of those, and that’s just me, because thought leadership brings you places you never thought you would go. It elevates you and your brand to places you never thought you’d be. And all those other things end up being kind of little when you see as to where thought leadership takes you, especially if you go at it from the perspective of coming at the topic from your voice and what’s important to you and not saying, Oh, I’m creating thought leadership and you know, it becomes part of marketing because real thought leadership is not part of marketing, even though it kind of falls under it. Real thought leadership comes from having an idea, sticking to it and figuring out how that thought evolves over a period of time.

Bill Sherman So that’s a great answer because I’ve got about five different follow ups from it. Okay. And so, let’s start digging in. So, you said that thought leadership may be important, more important than sales and go to market and new customer acquisition first customer acquisition in a startup. Let me play the role of a skeptic for a moment. Can you prove it? Can you tell me a story or give me an example of how false leadership achieves those things that you were talking about? How has it worked for you?

Jody Padar So thought leadership when it’s when it’s connected to a person. Right. It kind of creates this personal brand. Whether you call it an influence or followership, I don’t know. Like there’s all different things of what it does to the person who is connected to their thoughts. Right. And what happens is it’s the law of attraction. So, when you put that person in a startup or in a new company, or even if you’re developing it and it’s like, you know, you’re just starting a brand-new company, there’s no thought leadership there. And you’re the person whose kind of building it and creating it. What it does is it brings things. It brings people to you as opposed to you going to sell to them. They come to you, and it just becomes, how do we work together instead of, I’m telling you this or that, right? Like they want to work with you. And so it’s never even a sales conversation. It’s just like how and like, let’s work together. And that’s the thing that people don’t get that building up, whether you call it a personal brand or thought leadership or any of that, that’s the, you know, the force multiplier that people don’t understand, because otherwise you’re paying for marketing, you’re paying to do things to get people to want to talk to you. And this is people just come in and they talk to you all the time and you’re like, the things that come in your door is just so surprising because you would have never in your wildest dreams thought that you could have such opportunities. And they walk in your door because of thought leadership.

Bill Sherman So, Jody, you built a reputation brand identity vault leadership platform as the radical CPA. So how did that come to be? Did you wake up one morning and say, Hmm, feeling radical today, I can stay with it. Let’s explore that story for a little light.

Jody Padar So I never set out to be a thought leader. I didn’t even know that it existed. And basically, what happened is about 15 years ago, things were changing in the accounting space. And I was on the bleeding edge and I was trying to figure things out. And the tools that I was getting weren’t the tools that I needed. So there’s these new cloud technologies and new software coming into play, and I was trying to figure out how to use it and how it would affect my clients and doing it and working with them in different ways, and which has 15 years later evolved to be the status quo, like what everybody does now or what everybody’s thinking about doing. When I was doing it, everybody thought I was crazy, that it was nuts. Why would you be doing such a thing? You know, I was always like I was getting in trouble, but they were always looking at me like I was less than. And now, you know, they now they steal my ideas and they act like they’re their own right. And it’s 15 years later. But what happens is, is you try to understand things. And so I started writing and I started blogging because it was so confused in my mind and there was no one who I could read about. No one was teaching it, nobody was talking about it, right? So I started to write it to make clarity in my own head. And then I started Twitter was just starting, so I started posting blogs on accounting today, and then I started tweeting about it and I started building this following. And what I found is, is even though a lot of people didn’t believe in what I said, there was a very small following of people that were like, Go, Jody, go Jody. You’re right, they’re wrong. And we were the outsiders at that point. But we were I was getting validated that the stuff that I was talking about was relevant, and it did affect some people and they helped me evolve my ideas and we kept evolving and evolving and that that was really fast forward. About seven years ago, my publisher came to me and said, You need to write the book and you need to write it now. Because he saw the market and he saw how people were taking things that he knew that I was known for and that they were my ideas. And he said it’s time to put them on paper. And he and I like any good publisher. Right? He wants to make money off of it. So, he’s watching the market and he’s saying, oh, like now’s the time to write the book because now is when I can sell the book, right? And so I wrote the.

Bill Sherman Book and.

Jody Padar I wanted to call it the four tenets of the new firm. And he said, Nobody’s going to buy that book. And he said, We’re going to call it the radical CPA. And that’s how I was branded.

Bill Sherman The radical CPA. That’s fantastic. Right. So a couple of things in there. I want to call out. One, this journey started with you as a practitioner looking for better tools and ways of doing things right and going the status quo. Well, it kind of sucks, right? And looking for better ways, easier ways, more effective ways. Right.

Jody Padar Better life. Ultimately, I wanted to make more money and work less. I mean, at the end of the day, that’s what it’s about like.

Bill Sherman And with that, you talked about you had the folks who believed in the vision and said this is the way to get to work less, make more. Right. But you also had those detractors and. There are the people who. You can love your critics if they’re helping you refine the idea. And that’s one of the things that I heard in there was the critics who said, well, that doesn’t work because allowed you to make the ideas sharper.

Jody Padar Yeah, 100%, because if you were to look at the way I started to, I was very defensive what I was doing. And someone said to me, well, you know, they’re not going to buy it if you don’t open up to more of like discussion. And it was funny because it was, I was so protective of what I was talking about and I was like, Oh, you’re wrong. But what was when I started to let others in and help kind of evolve my thinking and make it bigger and stronger and everything. That’s when it really started to spread because it wasn’t so narrow minded. And it’s not that I was narrow minded. It was just that idea was still a baby, and it wasn’t ready yet. Like it was still starting to, like, figure itself out and it needed outside sources to help it grow. I couldn’t grow it by myself, and it was when I let everybody else in and really, I’ll say listened and evolved. It is that that’s when, like they say, we started a movement. That’s when the movement really started.

Bill Sherman And I want to call something out here because I think this is an important part of the story. You were focused on a very narrow sort of topic. How do we create the new accounting firm? Right. It’s not relevant. It’s not like management or leadership, right. You had a narrow niche of bringing technology and cloud and now we’d be talking about multi-cloud and that sort of thing.

Jody Padar Pricing and management and thing. Exactly. Yes, very firm, specific. If you weren’t a CPA firm, you wouldn’t be interested.

Bill Sherman Right? Exactly. But you built a large audience for this. And could you maybe in a broad brush stroke or two now talk about the size of audience that you’ve built talking about these concepts.

Jody Padar Sure. So you’ve heard too riches are our niches, right? So, like many times you niche something out like you, you get rid of people, but you also bring the people who follow you in closer. So that’s part of it. Right. But, you know, it began with. A few thousand. Well, I should say a few hundred on Twitter. A few thousand. Then I got to be like 15,000 on Twitter. And I was still writing for accounting today. And I did that religiously when everybody else. Like when like I really did it every two weeks. So, I kept like it was more consistency than anything else. And then I took that, and I took it to LinkedIn. And when LinkedIn first became as a publishing platform, I started posting a lot of my content that I had on accounting today on LinkedIn, and it turned out to be the most read and liked and shared accounting specific content on LinkedIn. And LinkedIn’s algorithm said that she’s someone to follow. So basically, it boosted me. And then, like, if it said you wanted to follow someone on LinkedIn, it would put my head up for money and finance. And I won that award two years in a row. And in the process that helped me gain OMERS like almost 700,000 followers on LinkedIn. So and the funny thing about them is they’re all CPAs, comptrollers CFOs, public accountants. There are a few people who don’t belong in that niche, but the majority of people who follow me and you can tell are people who are in the financial industry, wealth management, right? Which is crazy because I have such a niche following, which again makes it special because most people don’t have such a highly specific audience.

Bill Sherman Well, and I think of it in some ways, like a radio station. Right. People tune in to the station expecting a certain type of programing. Right. And you built your lane. You shifted it through different modalities, whether it was writing an accounting today, putting it on Twitter, LinkedIn. But you saw orders of magnitude of growth by staying to that niche. Right. And what becomes important is not do you have 750 million followers on LinkedIn? Because I don’t know how to be relevant to 750 million people. Heck, even sometimes the thought of being relevant to 600,000 people. That’s kind of daunting on its own in some ways. Right. But to know who those people are that you’re primarily talking to and say, this is what I’m talking about. If I’m for you, tune in. And if not, feel free to check out.

Jody Padar Right. And one of the interesting things about that is, remember, even though I was building this thought leadership platform, which I didn’t know I was building, because it was kind of like happening in the background, I was serving end users who were customers, who were regular small businesses who needed a CPA. So my thought leadership didn’t even directly correlate to my person who I was selling to, right? Like a lot of people would say, Oh, well, you’re selling some sort of financial program to CPAs or something. No, I wasn’t. I was selling small business accounting and tax work to regular small businesses. And my thought leadership was at the professional level. And what was funny about it is, is that thought leadership made it even more important for people to work with me because they wanted to work with the experts expert. So they were like, all in on the fact that I wasn’t even talking about things that related to them, but that other CPAs were following me and other CPAs were listening to me that that made their CPA that much more special. And that’s why they wanted to work with me. And I could command the prices that I did and kind of evolve my firm as well, because everyone says, well, it doesn’t even relate. Well, it doesn’t, but it does.

Bill Sherman Well, that layering of expertise of who follows you. And do I trust that person? Right. And there’s a second order credentialing that happens on that. I think where I want to turn now to, let’s talk about your current work at April. So let’s level set for a moment. What is April and how are you supporting April with the leadership?

Jody Padar So April is a new tax fintech. We’re going to market through banks, but essentially we would we would be considered similar to TurboTax and then individual taxation program. However, you would obtain us through your bank, not necessarily direct the consumer. So we’re not going through consumers, we’re going through B to B to C, but we’re essentially tax software and we’re going to bring to the market real time tax planning, etc.. There’s lots of good things that are happening. We’re fairly new start up. We were funded in end of last year. We officially launched in January, and I was hired because of my thought leadership and when I say because of right, like there’s all this other stuff of work that I do, I’m head of tax there and I’m figuring out and I’m technical. You have to remember, I still am a CPA at heart and I still have that technical component to me. But when you have someone who brings with them thought leadership, it exponentially builds the April brand as well as my brand, right? So, like they wanted me because it automatically gave them that authority, that specialness that they got the best, the best of the best in the accounting space. And from an investor standpoint, investors love that, right? Like it it evaluates when we’re trying to raise money, the investors love it. All of a sudden, again, it’s bringing authority to where you are and that that means stuff walks in the door as opposed to you again going out to find it. And that’s the thing that people don’t understand is like stuff just comes in like I don’t I guess you can say I market indirectly because I keep up my thought leadership, but I never actually sell like I never try and sell. There’s never a call to action. It’s always just me being me. And yet stuff walks in the door and it’s How do we do business together? Not if we’re going to do business. It’s how. And that’s the difference.

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 LeveragingThoughtLeadership.com.

Bill Sherman From the investors point of view, right. So for a fintech startup, one of the questions would be, okay, how were you acquiring customers in how are you getting subscribers and users to this service? Right. Whereas if you say I already have a following, I have people who will notice when I change my LinkedIn profile and say, I’m now with April, they’re going to ask, What’s April?

Jody Padar Exactly. It’s news, right? Like it’s news in the accounting community when I switched jobs because it was like, well, who are they and how did they get here? And and she’s like, and it sounds so weird because it’s like the best of the best, right? But that’s what my brand says. And so then everyone’s like, well, like, it must be special because they got Jodi. And it’s funny to say that, but ultimately that’s what thought, leadership and personal branding does. I mean, at the end of the day, you’re compared to someone who’s known versus unknown. Guess who they pick? They pick the known quantity. And and in some ways it’s good. In some ways it’s bad, right? Like and there’s nothing perfect about it. But like, you know, they’re going to pick who has the following. And to me, obviously, it’s worked in my benefit. But that’s why you want thought leadership and that’s why you want to be a thought leader.

Bill Sherman So here’s where I want to then ask this question. There are folks who are listening to this podcast who work inside organizations of various sizes, and they look and they say, okay, I’ve got subject matter expertise, which is sort of where you were when you started. Right? How do I, as a subject matter expert, make that leap to thought leadership? What should I work on and do that will lead me on the first steps of the journey towards what you’ve accomplished?

Jody Padar So first of all, I think it’s I think if you’re inside an organization, it might be a little bit harder because I worked for myself when I started. So, everything I said was my own. It didn’t matter. I didn’t report to anyone. There was nothing that I had to get approved. Like, you know, I’ve been in a in an organization where before I would post anything on social, it had to be approved. Right? So, like that, I get that and I understand that I had kind of a leg up because I was my own company, my own entity when I started. So, I don’t want to dismiss that, that it’s so easy. Right? But it starts with putting yourself out there. And until you take that risk to say, I have an opinion, this is my opinion and it’s an opinion. It’s not regurgitating what everybody else said. It’s taking a stance on something and nuancing it enough that it’s different so that people start to look at it and you have to do it consistently. You have to do it repetitively. And soon enough people start to say, Oh, she thinks like this. And therefore, I think like this too. Or I like the way she’s thinking. What else can we explore together? How else can we evolve something together? But you have to have your own opinion and you have to. It can’t be just regurgitating what everybody else said, because otherwise that’s not thought leadership. That’s content marketing.

Bill Sherman Absolutely agree. And the other thing on content marketing, I would add is it’s usually a call to action on right by or move towards a buying decision as opposed to thought. Leadership is education, discussion and often relationship building. Right.

Jody Padar 100%. And you have to respond to your followers, right? Like so now I don’t respond as much as I used to, but what? My followership was really small. Those were my friends, my peers. I was always reacting, we were always connecting. And they were helping me evolve my ideas. And you can’t take for granted who your followers are because nobody needs a leader without followers. So unless you nurture your followers and you help them understand what you’re thinking and you help them evolve their ideas, you’re not going to be a leader because obviously you can’t be a leader without followers. So your followers are just as important, if not more important than your thoughts.

Bill Sherman Your early followers, especially for sure, because it’s hardest to get those early followers. Now, my question for you, you mentioned consistency and you mentioned in terms of publishing biweekly with the counting today, but there is a through line of consistency through this entire story that you’ve been telling. How long have you been doing this now?

Jody Padar So probably close to 15 years. So, yeah. And in the beginning, it wasn’t I didn’t have 700,000 followers.

Bill Sherman Right. Right. Oh, absolutely. But my question is. On this journey of 15 years. When was the moment you went from, Hey, I’m kind of being stubborn and I’m going to talk about these things to you. Wow. This is working. This is their success here.

Jody Padar It took me too long. So, I was probably four or five years in before I realized I could actually get paid for my thoughts and that brands wanted to connect to me and that I could. I didn’t want to say sell my thoughts, but that people wanted my influence and they wanted to be connected to that. And I was very protective of it. And I still am very protective of my brand because I’ve spent too long building it, too much time, too much sweat equity in it. Then I’m not going to let any random person put their thing on my feed and like try and monetize it. Right. But it took me a good four or five years even before I thought that I could monetize it. And then. Then I started to monetize it. And then. And then that builds it, right? Because again, when you start working with brands, then they push it to their people and it just it exponentially grows it. Because now you’re like, co-branded, right? It’s like Jodi and AP or Jodi and whoever. And now those are two brands together. So, it just it multiplies it. So, I wish I would have thought about it sooner, but I didn’t know any better and nobody was doing it. Nobody even had social media. Like I was like I was the person on social who everyone said, you can’t give out tax advice on social. That’s when I was on Twitter was 28, 29, and I wasn’t even supposed to be on there like everyone was telling me. No.

Bill Sherman And so that’s where you put your profile in your resume. Why are you talking there? Yeah.

Jody Padar Right, right. Yeah. And especially as a CPA, you can’t give out tax advice. Oh, that’s against the regulations. So. So, yeah, like, I wish I would have thought of it sooner, but whatever you live in, you learn, and. And then it just continues to grow. And then at a certain point, my regular CPA firm kind of became it was being run by my partner at the time. I just let her basically run it and I created my own media company. And so then I split off and I had a media company and then we were acquired by one startup. And then I kept my media company and then I just left and I and I joined April about six months ago, but that acquisition was solely because of my thought leadership. They weren’t buying my firm, they were buying me, and they were buying the brand that I built because they wanted access to my followers and to be able to sell, right? Because they had something to sell and they wanted to sell it to my team. And when I was acquired by them and I still do, I 100% believe in the product. It was what was next when you say what’s radical? 15 years ago it was cloud. Today, artificial intelligence, it’s machine learning, it’s what’s next, right. And so it made sense that they would acquire me because everything that they were selling was everything that I was preaching about. It’s kind of that what’s next? So it made all the sense in the world.

Bill Sherman So let’s stay on the concept of acquisition for a moment. And I want to turn to the question of valuation because you implied it right? To my knowledge, there isn’t data out there yet that concretely shows that thought leadership creates a higher multiple on acquisition that you can’t buy line item the premium as to what the closing price is going to be. But from my perspective on anecdotal stories that I’ve heard. There is a premium in the multiple. I’d love to hear your perspective from the accounting side as to the thought leadership premium and acquisition.

Jody Padar Well, so here’s the thing. It doesn’t matter what you’re selling, there’s always a buyer and seller and there’s always somewhat of negotiation. You can say value is a value is in the eye of the beholder.

Bill Sherman Who’s willing to pay for what? He’s willing to sell it.

Jody Padar But what was interesting to me as I was starting to figure out that I wanted to sell my firm and I wanted to move on to something new. I had top 100 firms looking at my itty bitty firm, and they were looking at it because of me. Right. And because of my brand. Whereas what other small firm does the top 100 I’d like come to you to try and buy because they don’t even know you exist if you don’t have a brand and you don’t have thought leadership. So I had competition, which was like, again, kind of.

Bill Sherman Always good as a site to have multiple buyers courting you.

Jody Padar To have people courting me. Right? Right. And then I had this tech piece, too, right. So and I ended up going with the tech. But it was very obvious in in our talks that they were buying me and that they were buying my you can’t say they were buying my audience, but they were buying my influence, if that makes sense. And yeah, I got I got more than probably your average firm would have done so. And I had a really good attorney and I kept my brand outside the deal, which was probably the smartest thing I ever did. So that was like two, if you have a thought leadership like platform and you’re selling something, make sure your thought leadership stays inside its own entity from its own IP and it should always be in its own IP. And yes, you come with it, but it should always be its own IP. And that’s that’s the best advice I could give to anyone is make sure your thought leadership stays with you in its own IP.

Bill Sherman Well, you talked about having it as a media company. I’m guessing that the thought leadership sits in the media company.

Jody Padar Yeah, it sits. And my media company. Yeah.

Bill Sherman So as we begin to wrap up, Jody, I want to ask you one last question. If you were to offer advice to someone who has deep subject expertize today as looking to take the first step on the journey, what would be your recommendation if you could give them one piece of advice from the journey you’ve taken?

Jody Padar Get a thick skin because you’re going to have haters and you’re going to have love. Like people are going to love you and people are going to hate you. And if they don’t, you don’t have real you don’t have real ideas because if you’re in the middle, then you’re not you’re not thought leadership because you’re not expanding someone. So and you have to get used to being in the public eye and you have to get used to being and this sounds so weird, but I will be at accounting conferences and people will come up to me and like I said and my daughter laughs, right. Because we’ll be like sitting in the lobby and I have my yoga pants on and my clothes t shirt and people will come up to me and be like, Are you Jodi Pater? And like, my daughter just laughs at me because like, what is this accounting rock star like? It’s kind of crazy, but like you now, people watch you and you then have to like as you get bigger, you no longer have the freedoms that you used to have. So there’s good and bad with it, right? Like now you have other brands and these other brands. What would they say if you said this? And so it becomes. I don’t know. When I first started, it was all me and it was like really empowering. And now it’s more of a business, which is not a good thing or a bad thing. It just is. But you have to have that thick skin because people are going to judge you. They’re going to say things about you and you just it’s the Internet. So they’re like they hide behind things, too. So you just have to be okay with it and, you know, let it roll off you and know that you’re making a difference. And I think what kept me going for 15 years is not all the time, but every now and then I’ll get an email, I’ll get a LinkedIn note, I’ll get something that says, You changed my life. I did this because of you. I read your post. You told me to go take an analytics course. I did that and now I’m on a new track. And when you get those emails, that’s what makes you want to give back and continue doing it. It’s not the otherwise, you know that. I mean, that’s the high, right? That’s what gets you to continue to want to evolve and help your audience and really teach your followers what’s going on as opposed to, again, if you’re really in it just for monetary reasons, I don’t know, then it’s not so fun. It’s like, I don’t know.

Bill Sherman It’s just so and I think that’s a great place to close thought. Leadership has a deep intrinsic reward component, but often you need to keep that thick skin. You have those moments of joy, right? But when you get that email or that direct message and you realize you’ve made impact that can make your day or a week.

Jody Padar Oh, 100%. And it makes you keep going and it’s hard to measure, right? So like we started at the beginning talking about measurable, like how do you measure that impact? And it’s so hard to measure the impact both in the value of the company, but also in what you do every day. And those are the things that you know, are having impact. But are they measurable? It’s hard. And that’s the hardest thing about thought. Leadership, too, is how do you and for people who are in larger organizations, how do you trance make that transfer back to, you know, your KPIs are what you’re supposed to be doing in your day job and say that this is actually having an impact. Now, there are smart leaders out there who get it and see it and know it and like they feel it. But there are lots of less than smart leaders out there who don’t see it and they don’t see the immediate return or they’re pressured.

Bill Sherman That short term. Right?

Jody Padar What do you do?

Bill Sherman And they’re like, what, director?

Jody Padar The pressure.

Bill Sherman The short-term order. Yeah.

Jody Padar Correct. And then and then how do you feel? What is your value to the organization? How do you support it? And so that that’s I think the harder part about doing thought leadership in a larger organization when you are not the owner or you’re not the CEO.

Bill Sherman So absolutely and I’ll close on this is if you’re not in a position where you have that agency yourself, look for someone in the organization who can be a champion, whether they’re officially head of thought leadership in the organization, and they can provide support or someone in the organization who has enough gravitas that they can support the work that you’re doing. On taking ideas to scale. Jody, I really want to thank you. I know you and I could probably chat for another hour, but this has been a great conversation.

Jody Padar Awesome. Thank you and thank you for having me.

Bill Sherman If you’re interested in organizational thought leadership, then I invite you to subscribe to the RTL newsletter. Each month we talk about the people who create, curate and deploy thought leadership on behalf of their organizations. Go to the website. OrgTL.com 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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