Last week, I shot a LinkedIn video sharing my thoughts on the importance of being visible.

 

Without much thought I just recorded it. Since then, I haven’t stopped thinking about the subject.

 

That’s because I started thinking about my own cultural beliefs on this topic. From a very young age, I was taught it would be best if I didn’t stand out from the crowd. Yes, I should absolutely stand out academically, but anything extremely proactive was discouraged because it would only draw unwanted attention hence, trouble. At least that was the assumption. Just keep your head down and do the work.

 

I don’t think I’m alone (mostly) in feeling this way. In fact, I feel being Asian/Asian-American it’s very easy for us to become invisible in society, our career, and in front of important stakeholders. I believe it’s both an implicit and explicit bias.

We’re just not top of mind when it really matters.

Personally, I had a lot going against me when I started to see the importance of being visible – I am an introvert, Asian and female. I also talked fast yet softly. Completely hard to understand.

 

So when I decided to pursue a career in one of the most public-facing industries – television journalism, I (un)intentionally violated one of my very own childhood principles. However, this was a blessing in disguise. It wasn’t a natural transition and it was a big mind shift.

 

The world of television news ended up being a great training ground for me to see what the power of visibility can do.

  • When you’re visible, you are top of mind.
  • When you’re visible, people hear your thoughts and give you the credit.
  • When you’re visible, you get opportunities.

 

In fact, if you are an executive, this is even more important. According to a study released by Weber Shandwick, they say a CEO’s reputation is a fundamental driver in corporate reputation.

 

“81% of executives report that it is important for CEOs to have a visible public profile for a company to be highly regarded.”

 

“Half of executives (50%) expect that CEO reputation will matter more to company reputation in the next few years.”

 

One perfect example of this is Eric Yuan, the CEO of Zoom. Eric and I connected last year and we even jumped on a Zoom (of course!) meeting to discuss our shared passion for communications, though in different forms. Whether Eric sees this, I commend his action on being visible, both when Zoom was soaring and when they faced technical issues. He was quick to come forward and communicate with the public. They heard/read his words and saw his face.

 

He built a connection with the public.

 

Eric is also open-minded to engaging with the public. He doesn’t shy away from speaking engagements either.

“81% of executives report that it is important for CEOs to have a visible public profile for a company to be highly regarded.”

 

In the end, I believe being Asian/Asian-American, we have a lot of proactive work that needs to be done to be top of mind when opportunities arise. Effectively communicating plays a huge role in that because it’s the vehicle that will drive your message, your vision, and your beliefs for the larger audience to consume.

 

My hope is to empower executives and leaders to take a proactive approach in learning the skills of what encompasses a holistic practice of visibility. And more importantly, doing it in a style and way that’s authentic to them – and you.

 

There is no better time to start strategizing than now.

 

You can check out the video where I talk about visibility on my LinkedIn

Feel free to also check out our website to see all of the resources we offer!

 

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