Become a Better Brand Starring Marshall Goldsmith

Book ReviewsInterview

Today, it is my pleasure to share my interview with one of the leading authors, business coaches and influencer’s in our society; Marshall Goldsmith. I’ve interviewed superstars such as Sarah Lacy, Darren Rowse, Noel Capon, John Quelch, and Andy Beal in the past and this interview is nothing less than exceptional. I encourage you all to view Marshall’s work, as it will help you build a better personal brand and push you to become much more successful in doing so.

Dr. Marshall Goldsmith is a world authority in helping successful leaders get even better – by achieving positive, lasting change in behavior: for themselves, their people and their teams. Marshall’s newest book, “What Got You Here Won’t Get You There“, is a New York Times best seller, Wall Street Journal #1 business book and winner of the Harold Longman Award as the Best Business Book of 2007. Marshall is also a world class speaker and consultant. He writes for many high profile media outlets and never gets tired (just like me).

Marshall, who is the target audience for your book “What Got You Here Won’t Get You There“?

What Got You Here Won’t Get You There is written for successful people who want to become even better. As opposed to just discussing how to become successful (in the first place), this book discusses the unique challenges that come with success – and how to overcome these challenges.

How have you built your personal brand before, during and after you wrote your bestselling book? How has your brand evolved and what opportunities opened up after your major release?

My personal brand is simple – to be the world leader in helping successful leaders achieve positive, lasting change in behavior: for themselves, their people and their teams. My brand has evolved over the years – and has been refined through my associations with great thought leaders like Paul Hersey, Richard Beckhard, Peter Drucker and Frances Hesselbein. Before this book I was the co-author or co-editor of 20 books – and over 200 articles and columns. My new book has been a New York Times best seller, Wall Street Journal #1 business book and won the Harold Longman Award as best business book for 2007. This has provided me with countless opportunities for keynote speeches and executive education sessions.

How can successful leaders get even better and why did you choose that as your personal brand statement?

Successful leaders can get even better by: receiving confidential feedback on their behavior, picking key areas for improvement, involving their co-workers in ongoing development, following-up to ensure lasting change and measuring results to document success. A few years ago I wrote a column for Fast Company called, “To Help Others Develop, Start with Yourself”. The best way for leaders to help others develop is to be great role models for personal development themselves!

I chose this as my personal brand statement because my clients are already extremely successful people. They are not ‘losers’ or ‘failures’. They are ‘winners’ by almost any definition of the word. Even better – they are still working to improve!

What is your eBranding strategy around using as your company and as your personal/professional website?

These are very different. is the website for Marshall Goldsmith Partners, out network of top level executive coaches. It is designed to share our coaching philosophy and highlight the skills and experience of our coaches. is my personal website. I am a Buddhist. I give all of my articles, audios and even videos away to anyone who wants them. The response to this website has been amazing! We have had visitors from 188 countries (there are only 197 in the world).

How have you been able to manage visitor views of 1,720,356 articles, columns, interviews, webinars, audios, videos and resource pages? Do you believe passion drives your work ethic?

Giving everything away drives a lot of traffic. One reason that my book is an international best seller (translated into over 20 languages) is that so many people know my work. One reason that so many people know my work is that I give everything away on I also have regular blogs on and that have been read by hundreds of thousands of visitors.

I am very passionate about what I do. I love my work and have not plans to ever retire!

Can you give an example of a leader that has held back? What types of behaviors are situated with that individual and how do they overcome it?

I was interviewed in the Harvard Business Review and asked, “What is the number one problem of the leaders that you coach?” My answer was, “Winning too much!” It is very hard for successful people – especially successful leaders – not to constantly win. The higher up we go in leadership, the less we need to make ourselves winners – and the more we need to make our co-workers winners. One of the greatest leaders that I ever met said it well, “While achievement may have been about me – leadership is about them!

I asked one of my clients, “What have you learned about leadership since becoming a CEO?” He sighed, “My suggestions become orders. If they are smart, they are orders – if they are stupid, they are orders – if I want them to be orders, they are orders – if I don’t want them to be orders, they are orders anyway!” When I asked, “What did you learn from me, when I was your coach?” He smiled, “Stop. Slow down my 200 mile-an-hour brain. And ask myself, “Is it worth it?” before speaking. He went on, “When I have the discipline to do this, in fifty percent of the cases, I conclude, ‘Am I right?’ ‘Maybe’ ‘Is it worth it?’ ‘No’”.