Are you a leader just because you own and operate a small business? No. Effective business leadership demands a captain of the ship not someone just standing at the helm. Leadership is active, not passive. Leadership is a combination of traits and the ability to think and act like a leader. Leading and directing the activity of others for the overall benefit of the organization.
Here are a few traits of strong leadership:
The core of business leadership is being proactive rather than reactive. Leaders are good in crises - but that doesn't mean they sit around letting crises develop. Leadership involves identifying potential problems and solving them before they reach crisis proportions. Good leaders analyze and plan and adapt their plans to new circumstances and opportunities.
Vision provides direction and without direction, there’s not much point to all that planning; your small business will still flail about. So if you don’t have one already, take your first step towards business leadership by creating a Vision Statement for your business.
One of the best ways to avoid disgruntled employees and a dysfunctional team is to communicate clearly with everyone. Always let your workers know what’s going on and what you expect out of them. Also, give them insight into the bigger picture so they know your company’s overall goals and vision.
4. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes
You aren’t perfect. Nobody is. It’s impossible to run a business without making mistakes, but great leaders understand that mistakes will be made. That’s just part of being an entrepreneur. It’s how you rebound from those mistakes that really count.
5. Surround yourself with smart, talented people
As a business leader, it’s important that you build a well-rounded team. You should understand your own abilities—your strengths, your weaknesses—and surround yourself with talented individuals who possess the skills you lack.
Learning to be a leader isn't easy because it takes a conscious commitment and consistent effort to develop one's business leadership skills. I hope these tips help develop that skill and contribute to greater business success. Let me know your thoughts. Gerry@polarisgroupmc.com