Entrepreneurship and thought leadership are first cousins.
Older adults — people age 50+ — excel at both.
That’s some of what Professor Mary J Cronin of Boston College and I discussed recently.
Here’s a few excerpts from our conversation.
When you practice thought leadership,
it’s usually not the first act in your career.
It’s often your second or third act.
You’ve acquired deep expertise along the way.
And you’ve learned how to ignore the noise and spot the signal.
That’s true for #entrepreneurs and #intrapreneurs as well.
Sure, there’s the myth of the very young founders.
e.g., Gates and Zuckerberg.
But they are exceptions.
It usually takes time and deep experience
to be able to spot market gaps and business opportunities.
And that’s true for thought leadership as well.
You’ve got to know the landscape of the conversation.
Before you can add a meaningful insight.
So, if you’re looking for thought leadership practitioners
within your organization —
Recruit some young hi-pos. Get them started on thought leadership. They’re your org’s future.
But your most successful high-performing thought leaders (and intrapreneurs) are likely to be your experts age 50+. Because they have:
💖 The passion and sense of purpose
💡 The “t-shaped” expertise (both deep and wide)
🥅 The network needed to make an impact
If you’re interested in this topic, I’ll be publishing a podcast conversation with Professor Cronin on this topic later this summer.
Where is your org looking for its thought leadership talent
Are you considering your 50+ cohort for this opportunity?