If you want to work with clients and customers willing to pay high-ticket rates to work with you (so you can curate who you want to work with, because that's how you work best), you need a premium branding strategy. A strategy that says personal branding for leaders.

 

But where to start?

How to pick your creative service providers?

How to make sure you don't get exhausted and fizzle out mid-project?

And what support to put in place to make sure that your creative vision comes to life?

Below, find a 5-part post series I created at the relaunch of my web presence. 

 

The mistakes I made (expensive ones!). 

 

And what made the difference between botched (and prematurely aborted) projects that left me with nothing but an emergency rewrite/redo under tremendous stress… 

… and a versatile and all-encompassing website presence that feels like a truthful expression of who I am as a person, a thought leader, a visionary business owner, and a CEO. 

 

CREATIVE CREDITS:

Karla Pizzica, Web Design & Branding
Chelsea Klette, Photography 

PERSONAL BRANDING FOR LEADERS: How to Rebrand When the World is Watching Part 1

This is part one in a series I'll be doing to share my biggest lessons as a super established business owner going through a rebrand/pivot of kinds.

Today is all about how I prepped the upcoming new website release – next week! -, before I even hired a creative service provider or put together a Pinterest board

(link to board in the comments if you're curious).

personal branding for leadersbranding for thought leaders
IMAGE: snippets from my Pinterest mood board for this creative project.
Slytherin meets Ophelia/Perspone. Warrior Goddess meets mild bondage (see images below). 

 

 

I think one of the really difficult things about rebranding an advanced iteration of your brand, is this:

You're potentially putting something that works just fine on the line for something that might work better (but it might also flop, no pressure).

 

Unlike the first couple of branding projects that you do as an entrepreneur, you…

 

> already have an audience that's expecting you to show up in a certain way, and they expect you to give it to them

 

> are used to doing things a certain way (from tone in your content, to what kind of imagery you use), and you've gotten a little complacent and comfy

 

> have a community of peers, mentors and people you admire, that you feel are watching over your shoulders, and with every decision you make you wonder…

ARE THEY GOING TO BE IMPRESSED AND DELIGHTED, OR WILL THEY BE DISAPPOINTED IN ME?

 

And that question is going to bite you in the butt while drafting up the ideas, copy etc. for your rebrand.

 

Most of us, me included, want to please too many different people. And very few of us truly create from a place of not giving a fuck about what other people think of us (no matter how tough and self-expressed we are lol).

 

So the question you want to answer before you draft the 1st version of your new home page copy is this:

 

*********

Who are you ready to (lovingly) disappoint?

Who are you choosing to be accountable to?

*********

 

new leader website

IMAGE: the new home page, based on a Persephone theme, creating a juxtaposition between the dark, and the flowers/innocence/sensuality.

 

 

And not just groups of people, but specific individuals that'll come and check out your new online home.

 

The moment you choose, you can stop trying to please 32 different people, from>>>

 

> a random online influencer

> your brother's ex-partner who still follows you

> a parent, or elder figure you respect

> this super outspoken activist you admire on IG

> potential, future collaboration partner

> someone you were in a mastermind with, in 2018

> the person who always misinterprets everything you're saying

>>> to the confident AF comparable in your space (who you haven't decided yet you're going to hate or hire).

re branding for leaders 2022

 

CHOOSE.

 

Because if you don't, your brain is going to look like a carousel of other people's potential opinions of you (looming over you as your poor self is trying to put together some brand new core ideas)….

 

… rather than having that creative quickening, and white-spacey feeling that's sort of ideal for pulling off such a big creative project.

 

Tomorrow, I'll post part 2, which is all about how to find creative service providers that are a true match to bring your vision to life (and some very costly mistakes I made in the hiring department).

 

XO, M

 

 

PERSONAL BRANDING FOR LEADERS: How to Rebrand When the World is Watching Part 2

 

This is part two in a series I'll be doing to share my biggest lessons as an established business owner going through a rebrand/pivot of kinds.

 

You'll love today's post if you've hired creative service providers in the past, but notice that more often than not you feel disappointed with the result (and I'll be sharing some of my most expensive hiring mistakes).

 

********************

 

Lesson #1. Don't do creative projects under time pressure

 

Here's what I decided after spending $25,000 on a sales page this spring that I chose to rewrite within 48 hours (hello, deadline!).

 

I COMMIT TO ONLY TAKING ON HIRING CREATIVE SERVICE PROVIDERS WHEN THERE'S NO IMMEDIATE DEADLINE.

 

Almost all business coaches, masterminds and programs will tell you to outsource anything that doesn't absolutely need you.

 

For me, as the CEO of a now multi-million dollar company, common advice would be to stay the hell away from writing emails, design and branding.

 

Except… 

 

Because I treat my business like my art, every word matters, every design element matters, every image (and how it's paired with the copy) matters.

 

So after a series of projects in which I “tried to be the CEO” and not get too deeply involved in the process of the creative we hired, and having an attitude of “they know what they're doing, I've paid them really good money, I'm staying out of this as much as I can”…

 

… I decided to go against the mainstream advice, and instead of handing things over, become deeply, profoundly involved with this part of my business.

 

And it's been life-changing.

 

We went from one failed project after another, to me hanging out with my designer (I'll reveal her identity soon!) sometimes for a full 90-minutes co-obsessing over the smallest of details. Indulging in pure design snobbery, going back and forth until it's perfect.

 

Lesson #2. Prepare like they're not going to intuitively get your brand, then, find someone who does

 

I'm a perfectionist who actually enjoys outsourcing. BUT… if I hand something over and it's anything less than exquisite, we have a problem, because EXQUISITE is core to the very being of the brand we've created.

 

So, instead of trusting someone's process from the start and too easily, assuming a click before I really know it's there? I decided to hold out for a true fit designer, in the meantime, I prepped like a motherfucker. 

 

Because here's the thing:

You can't force the timing of a pivot, or the stepping into the next iteration of your work.

I know, **FRUSTRATING**, but I'll say it again for the people in the back:

MOST OF THE TIME ONE CAN SENSE A NEW ITERATION LONG BEFORE IT'S BRAND-RIPE, ACCEPTING THIS IS KEY.


And it's not just key for you, an established business owner.

It's also key for the people you decide to hire – because when you're iterating, what you said last week is something you might just fiercely disagree with a week later (or worse, it reeked off unearned and unacknowledged privilege, white saviorism or cultural approbation… been there, done that). It's not fair to them to get caught in the storm of your rapid transformation.

Now, this can be an experience that teaches you a lot about yourself, especially when you're a quick-start who likes to move through space wormholes, because fuck warp speed (can I get a raise of hands in the comments? lol).

 

In the meantime, I allowed myself to “noodle”.

I kept a notes page on my phone dedicated to cool sentences you can use for potential taglines and headlines down the line (one of the entries simple says “Well Funded, Well Fucked and Well Fed”, I might've written that one down in the middle of the night, but still… I don't disagree).

When I landed on version 46 of my home page copy, I wasn't shocked.

I knew I'd end up there, and that for me, this is worth it and it makes sense because it reflects a journey into clarity around who I am and what I'm about – not just new website copy. I value that.

#dontjudgethemedicine

 

Lesson #3. Work with people who RESPECT your fierce attention to detail, and tell them up front that's how you roll 

personal branding for online business leaders

IMAGE: I kept copy to a minimum throughout the entire project. It was an exercise in constraint, and discernment around what was important enough to not be edited away. What you see here are two of the case studies featured on the home page.

 

So often, I've let myself settle branding-wise.

Caught up in the culture of commodifying everything, from what a team member brings to the table (a resource, ugh) to simplifying a landing page to a tool to sell your thing, rather than an expression of your values, a telling of story, a visual adventure that can move us to tears or stir a deep sense of excitement.

In the same way I work deeply with my leadership mentor and team, to walk our talk and weave the honoring of our humanity into everything we do (from how we design client experiences, to color schemes)…

 

… I REALIZED THAT WE CAN HONOR OUR HUMANITY IN BRANDING BY ELEVATING IT TO EXQUISITE ART (AND TO NOT SETTLE FOR LESS THAN THAT)


But because so many service providers undercharge, they struggle to provide an environment where you feel…


>> welcomed to request additional edits

>> adding to the project when needed (of course in exchange for payment!)

>> it's OK to enlist their support in unearthing what the fuck you're trying to get across

 

I've repeatedly found myself rushing, and not verbalizing, or feeling guilty about putting into words what I actually wanted.

And have often settled for something I knew wasn't what I wanted, simply because I felt the meter had run out.

The creative service provider, because of their own discomfort around charging more, or add on to the bill, gave me signals that was not a conversation they were welcoming, almost as if I was asking them to work for free when I was truly sitting there, wallet in hand.

… (another reason why I love helping the folks who are suited for it, to go luxury with the services they create for their clients). 

 

When I hopped on a call with my now (INCREDIBLE) designer, I made it clear I wasn't putting some needed assets in place, I was looking for a fellow artist to partner with.

I shared with her my eye starts twitching when a design detail feels out of whack.

I told her straight-up I wasn't willing to settle.

And we agreed on a working relationship and co-creation flow that involved edits, deep discussions about details, and lots of creative freedom.

 

personal branding for online business

IMAGE: me celebrating the Leo in me in full glory. I had second, third and fourth thoughts about using this image for the header on the home page, but here we are. 

 

 

I hope you had a take-away from this post (let me know if you've any questions in the comments, happy to answer them!).

Tomorrow, I'll share how I decided to keep my rebrand within a very strict (but reasonable) budget. Just to show my clients who can maybe afford $10,000 for the full rebrand that it's totally possible if you're creative and are willing to be deeply involved. I'll also share how I made sure the rebrand had a minimal carbon footprint (including the story of using the flowers we planted from seeds we gathered from our neighbours the year before!).

XO, M 

 

PERSONAL BRANDING FOR LEADERS: How to Rebrand When the World is Watching Part 3

 

Before I dive in, and tell you all about our million dollar rebrand on a “budget”  …

 

…this is part 3 in a series I'll be doing to share my biggest lessons as an established business owner going through a rebrand/pivot of kinds. If you're planning a brand overhaul in 2022 (and you want it to be glorious), read the whole thing.

 

********************

 

We went flower picking the morning of the photoshoot.

I'd thought about ordering flowers at an upscale store in the city, but with 3 little kids, on a farm, during a pandemic while building a business… I have a lot of fun ideas that don't make it.

On the morning of, I took Ava, my oldest and fellow creative director to this project, and chopped down what was left of our flower garden we'd sown with seeds scavenged from neighbours. 

 

And it looks glorious. 

rebranding a personal brand for leaders

IMAGE: I kept copy to a minimum throughout the entire project. It was an exercise in constraint, and discernment around what was important enough to not be edited away. What you see here are two of the case studies featured on the home page. 

 

 

(the morning after the photoshoot, the front sat in and everything turned brown overnight)

 


It also is the perfect example of what my dream was for this project:

 

BUDGET

(I wanted to show my clients who have maybe $10,000 for a rebrand, it's possible to create something extremely exquisite without feeling you have to settle creatively). 

 

 

LOW CARBON FOOTPRINT

(I'm an environmental activist at heart, and experimented using clothes I've been wearing for 10+ years, giving them a new, creative spin, and ordered two new pieces of clothing, both of them vintage and relatively local). 

 

 

DELIBERATE

(I didn't have to rely on verbally trying to get my vision across as I've been quite unsuccessful with that in the past. When I shared the moodboard with the designer, she was GOBSMACKED and couldn't wait to dive in).


Here's what I realized: 

 

I actually get creatively turned on from having limits:

****************

 

Limits in the sense that I worked with a designer who is assertive enough to push back. 

 

Limits in the sense that I decided to go with flowers from our own garden. 

 

Limits in the sense that I wanted to work with a local photographer to cut travel out. 

 

Limits in the sense that I chose to be creative with the clothes I already had in my closet. 

 

*****************


Choice can overwhelm me. 

 

And for a time, I felt I wasn't getting the most out of my rebrand process because I wasn't hiring all the people, buying all the props or traveling to a luxury location. 

 

But when we're rebranding, we do so out of a desire to have your brand capture the truth about who we are and what we believe in. 

personal brand for leaders and coaches

IMAGE: Persephone before she gets flushed into the underworld (or something) – very proud of my eyebrows there, did I tell you I did hair and make-up myself as well? Leaning heavily on what I'd picked up during my Opera soprano days.

 

 

And that looks profoundly different for each of us. 

For me, it meant (this time around)…

 

> curating what should go together from within my existing wardrobe, sewing buttons back on, fixing some holes and making sure everything was washed and ironed.

 

> handpicking some key, vintage pieces to supplement what I already have

 

> staying close to home because I find travel very stressful (among a myriad of other reasons)

 

> getting my whole network to help me find a true partner design-wise (so deeply luxurious)

 

> working with a photographer who loves the word provocative as much as I do and who could visit me home at the farm

 

> including my kids in this process, from wardrobe picks, to buying lipstick to joining in on calls with my designer, to growing and harvesting the flowers we used for the “persephone” themed pics

 


Next photoshoot/rebrand project?

I might fly to Europe, buy myself (vintage) dresses and work with a celebrity photographer.

For me, it's all about challenging what wealth means to us. 

And allowing for the answer to be unconventional. 

 

This time around, it made me feel wealthy to… 

 

> show my clients what's possible on a budget (and yes, I've talked to all the service providers involved and yes, they're raising their rates, and yes, I'll continue to hire them if they'll have me!)

> admit to myself that branding is an intrinsic part of my artistry as a business owner, and that it's a good use of my time, to spend hours on Zoom with my incredible designer making nitty-gritty tweaks 

>  use a big chunk of money that would've otherwise gone to traveling, clothes etc. toward legal fees for indiginous land and water protectors

 

NOTE: at other times, being integrity has meant hiring lots of amazing professionals, because that's how we support each other in business! This post is in no way advising to keep things “as cheap as possible”. It's simply a reflection of this particular project, and how it unfolded. 

 

Just a final note to say that if you're going to be your own creative director, you want to make that choice very deliberately. 

 

In the past, it was implied, or implied that I wasn't and needed the designer's support. 

 

I was able to do my own creative direction because… 

 

> I'm the daughter to an interior design mom and come from an artist's family 

> I've studied art throughout my life (I'd save my allowance to buy books on Art Deco at age 8) 

> I have a shopaholic mother (lol for real) and I spent most of my days growing up in changing rooms

> I now have the time to take on such a big project, last year, this would've been impossible 

> I have curated a beautiful wardrobe over the last 15 years (it ain't shabby) 

> I had Keith's support, and he'd take the kids while I was on during dinner time with my designer who happens to live in Australia (hello time difference!) 

 

This is not to say, don't do it this way. 

This is to say, if you do this, go in with eyes wide open. 

 

Tomorrow, I'll be sharing all about how I paced myself through this big project without creative dry-spells, upset or endlessly pushing out time-specific milestones (I hate the word deadlines lol). 

 

Feel free to ask me any questions in the comments! 

 

 

PERSONAL BRANDING FOR LEADERS: How to Rebrand When the World is Watching Part

 

Ever felt burned-out/fizzled out/frazzled by a rebrand project (because it took too long, or it wasn't quite what you'd hoped for, or the edits seemed endless)?

 

… then you'll love part 4 in this series for established business owners going through a pivot/rebrand of kinds, because today I'm sharing about how I paced myself through months of process, without collapsing or wanting to turn away from it (see the result of our rebrand tomorrow!). 

 

********************

Being able to see through a creative project, all the way to ART (as in, to not settle for less than your vision), is about two things in my opinion:

Knowing what turns you on creatively 

Knowing what turns you off creatively 

Turn-offs for me include:

 

  • Rushing (I consciously had to reword deadlines as milestones)
  • Feeling unsupported (team capacity, time, home team) 
  • Feeling like I'm just a number on a client roster (dehumanizing for both parties)
  • Unclarity on who the fuck I am (and what I want to be known for) 
  • Performativity (trying to say the correct thing) 
  • Fear of cancellation of any kind 
  • Trying to please too many different people at the same time 
  • Feeling like I can't quite capture my new brand (I can feel it, but not see it yet) 
  • Being apologetic about the kind of results we create for our clients 

 

Turn-ons for me include:

 

  • Allowing myself to be unapologetic 
  • Saying what feels true, rather than what sounds woke 
  • Stop overthinking about how I fit into the already existing landscape
  • Clarity on who I am, and how I want the brand to represent it (being able to verbalize) 
  • Working with people who are willing to go down creative rabbit holes with me
  • Being clear on who I aim to please (yes, there will always be people I want to please)
  • Visuals, going onto Pinterest and playing around was a game-changer for me
  • Having the buy-in of my team, my family and my mentors to have at it
  • Reading about cancel culture (Clementine Morrigan on IG has been so helpful) 
  • Thinking of creative projects like actual art (instead of just “whipping up an asset) 

 

Recognize any of these?

 

If you do, you won't be surprised to hear me say that when you unrush the project and processes inside of your company (slow down to speed up)…

 

… imagery choices become moments where you gain clarity on who you are accountable to

… your color scheme becomes a promise of what's possible on the other side of transformation 

… the fonts you choose communicate how risk tolerant you are (for real)

Etc.

 

personal brand development for leaders

IMAGE: the contact page. We almost used this bird as the logo (since my name in Dutch means Blackbird), but settled on the other one. HOWEVER, both my designer and I felt sad for “dropping the bird”, so Karla suggested putting it back in, wherever it made sense

 

When you take your time, the project will start to:

> influence your thinking

> give you new ideas

> serve as inspiration 

> remind you of who you are

> tell you how you're different 

 

And honestly, this is how I thrived throughout this huge undertaking, including multiple new extensive lead magnets, funnels, 5-page website, blog, banners, bios, and more. 

 

Because I had time to pause and ponder, percolate and let things simmer?

 

It became something that fueled me, rather than depleted me. 

 

And that's one of the practices I hold sacred in my company, and one of the reasons we've been able to grow so much even during times at which we had kids at home, night nursing, insomnia even sleep deprivation-induced passive suicidal ideation (I'm much better, thanks!). 

 

SLOW DOWN

… breathe. 

… become really still. 

… tune into your senses. 

… connect to your instinct.

 

… and start to feel like you're riding a wave, rather than trying to create one.


THIS IS HOW BIG PROJECTS WILL START TO FEEL LIKE AN EXHALE, RATHER THAN A GRASPING AND GASPING FOR BREATH. 

 

Now, a valid question would be, “who has time for that?”. 

 

My answer:

 

You'll want to make time for that. 

 

Like we teach our clients, you want to be so rigorous in your practice of choosing what strategies are for you (and which ones aren't)… and which projects are worth pursuing and investing in (and which ones aren't)… 

 

…because now you can afford to go all-in with what you've decided is worth it. 

 

Do you have a way of deciding and discerning?

 

It's one of the first things we support our people in honing, because most have been in programs that try to mono-culture their inner landscape for the sake of immediate productivity and profitability. 

 

Whereas we're committed to helping people re-wild, remember and reclaim for the sake of wealth in every sense of the word – money becomes inevitable that way. 

 

We've learned to take strategies at face value, and not dance around it for a while, sniffing, tasting, looking before diving in. And it's giving us tummy aches industry-wide. 

 

personal branding exercise for leaders

IMAGE: Ok, honestly? I think I'm in love with myself (as any self-respecting Leo should be). I also want to marry my designer and brand genius Karla Pizzica. Also, hello The Rewilding Wealth Movement ™ .

 

In short… 

 

I feel this is one of the reasons it's become so hard for so many to move ourselves through these big creative projects. 

 

We've forgotten how to use our senses. 

 

To notice a certain font makes shoulders clench. 

To notice that certain color combinations create a pleasurable feeling of exhaling. 

To notice that the wrong copy/image combo makes your tummy feel unsettled. 

To notice a the writing process for a certain blog post makes you feel headache-y. 

 

Do we notice?

Do we not notice?

Or have we learned to disregard our noticing?

 

The project that we're going to release day after tomorrow is a testament to what happens when two people come together, take their time, and join their instinctual knowing about what's right, and what isn't within the context of this art work. 

 

It's like going into the unknown together, rather than following a recipe for “success”. 

 

And that feels just fine. 

 

XO, 

 

Merel 

 

*****************

PERSONAL BRANDING FOR LEADERS: How to Rebrand When the World is Watching Part 5 

 

Today's the final chapter in this series, and I want to talk about what it takes, and what we're potentially facing when creating work that matters.

This is not a cautionary tale.

It's a call to courage.

And my hope is that you read this and remember why you're willing to take a public hit for your life's work, and everything that comes with it.

*****************



In the last few weeks, I've spent a lot of time on Clementine Morrigan's IG account. She talks about cancel culture, and it's been profoundly healing for me. 

 

You see, a while back someone I deeply trusted did a “cancel attempt” after I made a public claim about the results my client got that year (my sweet revenge is our case studies page).

She didn't succeed.

 

But during that launch, in which I made close to a million with my quarantine baby nursing while doing sales calls, I felt lost and attacked.

 

Without being even given the opportunity to show the math behind the claim. 

 

Or as Adrienne Maree Brown says, in her book “We Will Not Cancel Us”:

 

“Canceling is punishment, and punishment doesn’t stop the cycle of harm, not long term. …we place each other in an overflowing box of untouchables – often with no trial – and strip us of past and future, of the complexity of being gifted and troubled, brilliant and broken“.

Unfortunately, the feelings stirred up by this experience lingered for way too long.

Why did it cut so deep?

 

Because up until that moment, my integrity had never been challenged.

 

And I understand that that in and of itself speaks volumes about my level of privilege (and my fragility as a result of it) – I've been sitting with that a lot. 

 

This was new. 

 

And arguably, this is what people have been telling me repeatedly, a sign of growth.

Integrity is at the core of our company.

That doesn't mean I always get it right.

 

I don't. 

 

Or that I have the “moral high-ground”.

Nobody should ever assume this in my opinion.

 

But I'll tell you that I've spent $100,000+ last year working with a mentor who helps me and us as a team to walk our talk. And if you read this and wonder what I mean by this, feel free to ask me! 

 

But in short…

 

She's making sure that any “social justice noise” I make online gets imple-fucking-mented.

 

So having someone accuse me publicly of being the opposite?

 

That hurt.

 

I could choose to not write about it. 

 

But here's what I know:

 

Everyone of my peers has had experiences like this one.

And if they haven't already, they're afraid they'll be next. 

 

Speaking of peers, I was recently chatting with Kelly Diels and she urged me to not underestimate the effects a cancel attempt can have.

I can attest to that, because here's what happened.

I started questioning everything (not so bad, it helped get real about my mission) 

 

I became very cautious about who to trust (paranoid dreaming and insomnia while already night nursing and being sleep deprived postpartum – not so good). 

 

The brutal sleep deprivation while navigating a pandemic with 3 kids under 5, including a baby while farming, while building a 7-figure+ business lead to what's called passive suicidal ideation (and that's really, really bad). 

 

I often wonder:

Would the person who instigated this, and who, in hindsight used it as a way to launch her own programs and courses (yes, a “call out” can apparently be used as a launch method)…

 

… have done what she did if she knew the deep suffering it has caused?

 

All I know is that I'm grateful to now understand that what she did was abusive. 

 

Because that's what it felt like. 

 

With the added pain of feeling, I just needed to get my shit together –

Why couldn't I leave it behind me?

Why was I being such a cry-baby?

Why was I so fucking fragile?

What was wrong with me?

After all…

To have one disgruntled ex-client who changed her mind after leaving a glowing review, making disparaging comments isn't the end of the world, sure it got shared a few times, but… ** shrugs shoulders**.

Especially compared to… [insert whatever feels like a good fit].

Here's how I handled it:

I didn't give her airtime, which was the right decision.

But I also realize that the restorative justice get-together I offered her initially, and waiting with my cease and desist until she continuously slandered me, wasn't the right move.

Next time someone tries this with me?

My legal bitches will ride at dawn. 

 

I will never again risk my mental wellbeing, my mission and my kids having a mother for the sake of elegantly navigating a cancel attempt. 

 

All of this to say… 

 

Talking about this isn't easy.

But I'm writing the article I wish I'd run into after having this experience. 

 

How it changed me:

I've become extremely skeptical of anyone who brings cancel drama to the virtual stage, and I always question the public accusations made:

 

 

Is it unethical

Or do you just not like it?

Is it unethical

Or are you maybe jealous?

Is it unethical

Or is it something you wouldn't do?

Is it unethical

Or is it inconvenient to you?

Is it unethical

Or does it remind you of something that is?

Is it unethical

Or do you wish it was?

Is it unethical

Or are you in a tear-down mood?

Is it unethical

Or are you in need of attention?

Is it unethical

Or does it make you look good to say so?

 

I personally find that the people I love the most, and admire, have either been cancelled (or been attempt-cancelled), faced lawsuits, went bankrupt, etc.

In other words…

 

I like to surround myself with people who've lived.
Who dared to say some things when nobody dared to.
Who are willing to put their ass on the line for what they believe in.

 

And

I've unsubscribed from a flawless track-record as a determination of value.

 

I've taken back the authority from those who judge. 

 

Or as one of my mentors likes to say: “I do not give you authority to make that assessment” (thanks, Jade!).

Reading 250+ erotic novels about outlaws and motercycle clubs definitely helped.

Because it drove home that there isn't one definitive moral compass we should all adhere to. 

 

Here's a link to one of my favorite series of all times .

 

How does this relate to creating your brand as a leader?

 

You can create a brand that's palatable to the mainstream. 

 

But the chance that you're going to just regurgitate what's already been said is huge.

Or

You can create a brand that challenges people's thinking, that provokes, that has the power to change people's lives with one website visit, or one email you send out.

And if you choose to go that route… 

 

Expect pushback. 

And instead of trying to write to avoid disappointment, or triggering some folks, make the conscious decision every time you're about to soften an edge, and smooth out the disruptive qualities of your work?

Say no to erasing your own brilliance, and say yes to your edges.

This is how we create work that matters.



Your judgy MIL be damned.

© 2022 Merel Kriegsman Media. For permission to reproduce or repost this post, email team@merelkriegsman.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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