I work with executives who are looking to increase their credibility. They see the value and need to be seen as credible and influential with their teams, their boards of directors or their clients. What often surprises me however, is that they don’t often pay much attention to the credibility of the rest of their team.
Every day executives send employees out to meet clients, go to conferences or represent the company at a networking event. What I always ask my clients is ‘What are you doing for your employees to ensure they are a credible representative of your company?’
These days professional development is a buzz phrase in fast growing companies. But often it is seen as something they need to do to attract and retain talent. I would suggest that it is a profound investment in your business. Making sure there is consistent credibility across the organization can only help you in the end. Here are a few things to think about.
Consistent message: Do a quick test and ask 10 random people across your organization to video tape their elevator pitch about themselves and the company. Now sit down and watch them back to back. You may be shocked how many mixed messages your prospects, clients or community are receiving.
How deep is your bench?: Ask yourself, do you have 5 or 10 employees you feel comfortable sending to 5 or 10 different conferences to represent you? If not, get on it. Speaking in public is a great credibility builder not just for the individual but for the organization that was smart enough to hire them. Build up your bench of speakers by making sure they are trained and ready.
Call out inconsistencies: If you see or hear a team member who isn’t representing the organization in a way that aligns with the brand and messaging, talk to them. If you allow inconsistencies to continue you will send a signal to others that everyone can do their thing. In short order you will find your brand and message lost along with your own credibility.
A CEO or leadership team with credibility is not enough. Invest in the rest of your employees and the whole organization will reap the rewards.