The goal of our site is to share the unique perspectives and experiences of industry leaders around the world.

But what makes an industry leader? What does that mean?

Some people think that you have to be universally considered in the top 1% of your field to be considered an industry leader. We respectfully disagree.

We consider an industry leader to be anyone who makes a positive influence on others in their field. There’s no audience or press requirement in our opinion.

Framing it this way can be a bit of an adjustment for those who believe industry leaders are the “elite.” As a matter of fact we’re expecting to get a bit of pushback for our stance on this.

But this is why we don’t mind:

We’ve seen firsthand how under-the-radar individuals can affect massive change no matter what space they frequent. A good idea is a good idea, and a breakthrough is a breakthrough.

Oftentimes the changes that the elite get credited for come from these people instead. In every hot tech startup there’s an awesome engineer or clever marketer who is a driving force.

Even though CEOs and founders might get all the attention in TechCrunch, that’s not where it ends.

This is why we’ll be using our expanded definition of “industry leader” when we look for individuals to showcase on the site. There are so many more interesting folks who are world-class at what they do, but never get the attention.

If you want to read another article about Elon Musk there are plenty of publications you can visit to find one.

This won’t be one of them.

So why are we interested in the skill that hides below the surface? What makes this so compelling for us anyway?

Across the careers our team has amassed we’ve either worked with, or heard of these true industry leaders. Every single successful company has them.

A business where the only true leader is the CEO is a business that’s going nowhere fast.

A business where a pool of motivated team members (or the true industry leaders) push the company forward, will win.

Unfortunately this notion is not only difficult for people to grasp from an acknowledgment standpoint, but from a management standpoint as well.

It’s one thing to give all the credit to the person at the top of the food chain. It might be misplaced, but it’s usually fairly harmless. A good example of this would be how many TV or movie watchers credit the actors for being hilarious, when a team of writers agonized over the script before passing it along.

The real issue is when this lack of value affects the growth of an organization. And it happens a lot.

It’s quite common for contributions to be mitigated (usually unintentionally). Poor team workflows or biased management structures can take a fantastic employee’s contribution and water it down.

There are too many businesses that fail because the CEO or founders aren’t comfortable hiring people smarter than them, or believe in the notion that skill and talent should be weighted from the top down.

Well, we want to shine a light on the silent assassins and give them their credit.

There’s so much that can be learned from expanding the pool of knowledge along with the definition of an industry leader.

The Benefits Of Breaking It Down

Another reason why getting more granular is a good thing, is it allows higher quality information to be passed to people in specific roles.

When you hear someone in the c-suite talk about something that worked for them it can be very helpful, especially to people in leadership or management positions. They’ll usually cover macro strategies that have proved to be successful, and interesting ways you can get the most out of your team?

But what if you’re in the trenches or a specialist?

If you run email marketing at a startup and want to improve your skills directly related to your position, this advice might not be very useful. If you manage a team you might find a few nuggets here and there.

But that’s likely it.

However, what if you heard from another email marketing expert who shared some tips and tricks they use on a daily basis? You’re far more likely to learn something actionable.

That’s what we like about this approach. The nitty gritty details are the good stuff, and you get them by hearing from specialists.

The true industry leaders.