Experts vs. Thought Leaders

Thought Leaders came into existence in 1994. “Thought leader” is a buzzword or article of jargon used to describe a futurist or person who is recognized among peers and mentors for innovative ideas and demonstrates the confidence to promote or share those ideas as actionable distilled insights (thinklets).” Wikipedia Thought LeaderWhat I find fascinating is that everyone who puts themselves out there as an expert, expects to get paid. I had lunch with a colleague today and he kept asking how do we monetize this stuff. I couldn’t get it through to him that it isn’t about making money. Sure we have to live. But if your only goal for doing something is monetary your not and expert or a thought leader. Thought leaders make money because other people recognize in them their ability to see the world from a different perspective. A perspective that lives outside the box, not just thinks outside the box on occasion.  A thought leader is someone who may not be an expert in anything but they are a visionary about what could be. They are dreamers. They dream and then they share that dream freely.  This doesn’t mean they don’t at the same time think about how to move things or integrate things that are income producing. But let’s face it art goes up in value after the artist dies. Most genius isn’t recognized when it is first seen cause it is veiwed as different. The power of social media is that we can follow on twitter, friend on facebook and myspace, connect/stalk on brightkite those people who we find interesting. We are all creating our own though leaders by following people we find fascinating. I never tell someone how to run their business. That is not my job, or I’d be a consultant. I ask questions to allow people to lift themselves outside of their own box in order for them to be able to soar up and look back from a vantage point that is unencumbered by their self imposed box. That is why and what I love about being a coach.In the coaching profession a commonly embraced term is wise elder. You don’t have to be and elder to understand that if you just help unlease someones potential and get out of their way they can do amazing things.Thanks @DocMichele for prompting this post. She does multigenerational coaching and I consider her to be a voice to listen too.Chuck Franks, PCC @CoachChuckPlease share if you liked.