Who Speaks For You

The lion’s story will never be known if the hunter is the one to tell it. West African proverb.

It hit me the first time I read this: Introverts are the lion in this proverb.

If we allow our story to be told through someone else’s perspective, the fullest truth of our story can easily be diluted, distorted or even lost.

The best voice for our story is our own. Developing ways to talk about our strengths, expertise, experience, and what we’re passionate about is invaluable for others to hear directly. Being able to tell our story is key to our growth and our contribution to the world.

Of course it is important to have champions and sponsors who will talk about us to others. But when they do open a door, it is vital that we hold our own talking about what we can bring to the table.

You are not alone if this feels uncomfortable. I know many people, from high potentials to senior leaders, who don’t like talking about themselves. Next week I will share some ways to build the strength of your voice and the ease with which you use it. In the meantime, consider using this week to see when you are representing yourself and when you are leaving it to others to do. Think about what you could have said. Hindsight is your friend in this regard. Use it to your advantage to prepare for future opportunities.

The lion, after all, learns by doing.

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