Leaders: from visionaries to role-models
Nowadays, more and more business start-ups spring all around the word, as the mentality regarding success has changed over the past decade. However, the person in charge of that business is not always the right leader for it. The entrepreneurs are certainly creative visionaries, but not all of them are capable of running the company they started. A business idea represents only the first bricks on which a business / company will be built.
One aspect to be considered regards the skills leaders need in order to manage their business’ processes. Leaders, mainly, have to provide management skills. This aspect does not only involve personal, or individual management skills, but also operational and organizational capabilities. Generally, not the knowledge part is the most demanding one, but the organizational abilities and qualities such as: honesty, emotional intelligence and communication, sense of humour, confidence, commitment, creativity, intuition, positive attitude and the ability to inspire.
Your business and your employees are usually a reflection of yourself, and you are the pattern your business follows. Ethical behavior and honesty should represent the key values for your business, values which provide respect and confidence both for your employees, and for your stakeholders. In order to build a friendly and helpful workspace, one has to take into consideration several key factors:
- Establish the key values for your business: Ask your employees to make a list of values and core beliefs which define themselves and their working abilities, in order to mutually agree on the key values for your business. This strategy will offer your employees the sense of confidence and respect they need in order to become engaged.
- Trust your team: Identify your team’s strengths, and find out what each team member enjoys doing most. They will put more thought and effort into tasks that are more enjoyable for them. This strategy will prove to your employees that you believe in them, and it will maintain a balance between the focus on the higher level tasks, and business productivity.
- Communicate clearly: Explain succinctly and clearly your ideas, and what do you want your employees to do in order for them to understand your vision. Thus the entire company will be working towards the same goal. A productive work environment is dependent of healthy communication.
- Positive attitude – confidence and commitment – In order to maintain your team motivated towards achieving success, you have to maintain a positive attitude and keep levels of energy up. You have to sustain the balance between seriousness and playfulness. This might be the solution for working extra hours to finish a task.
- Be able to inspire – creativity and intuition – there are situations when you have to deviate from your set rules in order to handle a different type of issue. In this case, you have to intuit the situation and to be creative. Your personal example is relevant for your employees’ professional development.
Randy Nelson states in his work entitled The Second Decision: the qualified entrepreneur, three steps which can help you decide whether you have to be the leader of your company, or just remain its entrepreneur. These steps are presented by Cristopher Hann, as follows:
- Surround yourself with independent advisors;
- Acknowledge your short-comings, then act on them;
- Examine your motivation.
Generally, leaders have to be creative visionaries in order to start up a new business, they have to provide new ideas, and visualize new market trends. But the entrepreneurs are not always suitable for a leading position. Most of the times, this implies higher responsibilities, management knowledge and skills but, most of all, they have to provide emotional intelligence abilities.
- Nelson, Randy (2015), The Second Decision: the qualified entrepreneur
- Should you lead the company you started? (n.d.) Entrepreneur Magazine
- Top 10 qualities that make a great leader (n.d.) Forbes Magazine