Today, I had the honor of being featured in an exciting three-part series published by LinkedIn in which they asked members to share why they publish on LinkedIn. Being featured in this video and contemplating my thoughts on their questions has been thought-provoking and eye-opening, for sure.
Here’s the video:
And my responses to their questions:
Why do you feel it’s important to share your professional perspectives with the world?
Growing up, I absolutely adored writing. Nothing made me happier than to explore new ideas and see first-hand how different cultures and perspectives view the world.
Throughout my 18 year corporate career, however, I didn’t feel like I had an outlet to share my ideas openly or build discussion. I faced some challenges coming up the ranks as a woman, at times feeling totally isolated and alone. I wanted to focus on what I loved most–working with concepts and ideas – exploring them and moving them forward to build something powerful.
So, I decided to leave the corporate world to pursue my passion–helping women succeed in the workplace and in business. And now, after 10 years as a speaker, leadership developer, and career success coach, I’ve had the opportunity to connect with thousands of women and share knowledge on how we can thrive in our careers. Writing is a huge part of that for me.
Why did you decide to publish on LinkedIn?
When one lone person speaks up and shares their candid opinion about something, they’re actually representing thousands upon thousands of people who feel the same way. Publishing on LinkedIn makes that type of impact possible. It allows people to make their voices heard.
I’ve been able to reach millions of people who in many ways are my “tribe” – people who are experiencing the same types of challenges, issues and questions that I did (and do) in my professional life – and sharing new ways to look at these challenges and navigate through them. I’m doing work that I love and offering some transformative help in the process.
How has publishing on LinkedIn connected you to new opportunities?
A few of my posts have reached more than a million views and connected me with new partners, projects, speaking engagements, and writing opportunities. After publishing a post on toxic behaviors in the workplace, I was invited to join The Comedy Cellar Show on Sirius XM for an eye-opening discussion on toxic behaviors.
And it’s helped me connect with thousands of people around the world who are interested in the same issues as I am. The comments I receive really touch me, such as this recent comment from Sharnee Bennett in Australia who wrote: “Kathy, this is a beautiful well written and empathetic article. I think we can all see ourselves somewhere in your post at various times in our lives. Or even right now. The key is seeing it in ourselves. Being willing to see it ourselves. And then take supportive action to resolve. Thank you for your contribution.”
What would you say to someone thinking about publishing on LinkedIn?
Don’t be scared. Use your voice. Find it. Everyone on the planet has something important to say – critical experiences to share that are helpful to others, and that emerge from their unique perspectives, filters, histories, passions, traumas, and triumphs. When we share our ideas, challenges, and our perspectives more openly and publicly, it can be a truly life-changing experience.
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In looking back, from the minute I decided to push through my fear of speaking up (which started in childhood), and to start writing and talking openly about my own challenges in the workplace, my life transformed. I saw that what I had faced in the workplace actually reflected thousands of women’s experiences throughout the world. I shed the feeling that I was alone and helpless, and I saw that I had the power to make a difference, to move the needle on critical issues and challenges, because it was a collective voice I was tapping into. I realized too, that when you share your unique and heartfelt take on life – with all the honesty, openness and courage you can muster — you inspire others to speak up about what matters to them. It changes not only your life, but the lives of all those around you as well.
Are you boldly and openly sharing your voice and your insights? It’s time.
For more on publishing on LinkedIn, check out some easy best practices here and take inspiration from The Most Memorable Posts of 2014. Stay tuned for parts two and three of this LinkedIn series in the next few weeks on the LinkedIn Official Blog.
To learn more about building and sharing your thought leadership, check out my thought leadership coaching services here.