Leading and Inspiring, the Social Media Way
If you're in downtown Toronto these days, you're likely to run into a billboard ad that reads, in big, bold letters: "Transform passion into action." Beside the words there is a smiling, confident face.
The name behind the smile is Lina Duque, and the confidence behind the words comes from years of experience of doing just that – following her passion and practising it.
A social media strategist and a thought leader in her field, Lina provides expertise for senior executives and entrepreneurs on how to use social media tools and platforms to build and manage their personal brand. She successfully turned her passion, her wish to help others leverage the power of social media, into a consulting practice that calls some of the country's top business schools, including the Ivey Business School at Western University, as clients.
Applying her own tips has clearly paid off.
Today, she's a regular speaker and writer in the social media space, contributing articles to the likes of Forbes and the Globe and Mail, where she will share, for instances, advice about building your personal brand while maintaining the energetically-demanding 9 to 5.
Much inspiration could also be drawn from her own personal experience of managing responsibilities.
A few years ago, when Lina was in the midst of working as a media relations advisor for a Bay Street law firm and studying full-time as an executive MBA student, she and her husband found out that she was pregnant. Now, with her weekends and evenings already full of writing papers and making conference calls with her team, that news was not quite timely.
Challenges like this, however, should never stop one from pursuing goals, dreams, or passions. And so, Lina decided to be a role model for her baby-to-be, and she adapted. And not only did she adapt, but also made the best of the situation.
In her article on Leanin.org, a website that advances women's leadership, which was created by the COO of Facebook Sheryl Sandberg, Lina explains that rather than hindering her, being pregnant while studying and working full-time taught her how to prioritize her tasks and manage her time, both of which help her today in her career. Another thing she came to experience was the counterintuitive paradox of: "when you have more time, you waste more of it."
Or, a list-full of tasks is not necessarily a bad thing. It can be overturned. Today, she still applies that lesson. Besides developing her own personal brand, and as part of honing her leadership skills, Lina routinely reaches out to women leaders for mentorship and inspiration. She notes the lessons learned and generously shares her findings.
One of those women is Ryerson University's Vice President of Finance and Administration Julia Hanigsberg, whose busy lifestyle has taught Lina a few things about effective collaboration and fearlessness. Another is SickKids' former CEO Mary Jo Haddad and her wonderful advice – "You don't have to change who you are to achieve your career goals... Make your own way."
So, whether you make your own way or seek help in doing so, both of which can go hand in hand, naturally, consider meeting with Lina. You might want to attend her social media course (at Ryerson University's Chang School of Continuing Education), or contact her directly through her website. Either way, make sure you have a pen and paper handy from the get-go – she might start giving you great advice at any given moment.
To learn more about Lina, visit her website at linaduqueconsulting.com.
Photo: Jim Panou