Sunday, 16 September 2012

3- Leadership Traits for Successful Small Business Owners

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“Do you know the single greatest problem in any organization? The answer is simple: a lack of managerial skills. Obvious? Perhaps. Unfortunately, we lose sight of this fact” – Anthony D’Souza.

Is your small business a casualty?

For many decades, we have viewed leadership as power, honor, prestige, authority, or personal advantage.

In his book, Leadership-Trilogy on Leadership and Effective Management, D’Souza says that a modern leader seeks to be of service, rather than dominate. A leader encourages and inspires as well as respects others rather than exploit their personalities.

As a small business owner, do you have the attributes of a modern leader that D’Souza talks about?

If not, don’t despair or feel out of place. Today, you’ll learn the leadership characteristics that you must possess to take your small business to the next level.

If you keep on reading, your business will thrive because you’ll have the vital leadership characteristics to effectively manage your entity. They are:
1.    Goal orientation
“A mark of leaders, an attribute that puts them in a position to show the way for others, is that they’re better than most at pointing the direction. As long as one is leading, one always has a goal. It may be a goal arrived at by group consensus, or the leader, acting on inspiration, may simply have said, “Let’s go this way”. But the leader always knows what it is and can articulate it for any who are unsure. By clearly stating and restating the goal, the leader gives certainty and purpose to others who may have difficulty in achieving it for themselves”- Robert Greenleaf.

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Following the articulated steps of starting a small business  to the letter won’t help much. Reason? You need a goal (s).

How do businesses express their goal (s) to the general public? Simple: through a vision.
Do you know that a small business without a vision is like a ship without a ladder?
I bet you have the urge to succeed. Simply set your goals right. Lead your business to success.

2.    Enablement
Do you focus on helping others grow?

Most of us lack this attribute. We, small business owners, focus on enriching ourselves at the expense of our employees and customers. Our main reason is to make profits. We forget that we should be rewarded for helping others by meeting their needs and wants.

If your customers or employees realize that you’re out to exploit them, they’ll run away from you.
Can you pinpoint any business that can survive without customers or the required human resources? I bet your can’t.

Enable others grow or you’re out of business!

3.    Concern
“Leadership is service, in the sense that it seeks to meet the demands of another or of the group by performing needed functions. Sometimes strong directive power is effective leadership, such as when a group has lost its sense of direction or purpose; with another group, or at another time when the group is functioning well in its relationships and has its directions clear, non-directive styles of leadership are needed. Sometimes the group needs to be encouraged and supported; at other times it may need to be reoriented. Leadership serves the needs of the group”- Robert Keating.

Do you know what makes it difficult to manage people? It is because they’ve likes and dislikes, needs and feelings, and the ability to think for themselves.

Well, if you show concern and treat people with respect as well as enable them achieve their needs, you’ll succeed in business. You can do this by establishing a conducive working environment, sponsoring your employees to attend seminars and trainings, or giving advice to your clients on how to use your products or services effectively.

Bonus Leadership Trait

I know I promised to give you only three leadership traits. Since you’ve read this far, I feel obliged to go further and educate you more. It is for this reason that I’ll give you the fourth leadership trait.

4.    Self Development
Do you have the “I-can-win-attitude in you?

Your answer should be yes! There’s no way you can lead your business to success if you’ve a negative image. Negativity hinders you from realizing your full potential. Therefore, develop a positive healthy self-image by mingling with positive-minded people. Moreover, read self-development books that will enable you become a better entrepreneur and a leader.

The above leadership characteristics will propel you to greater heights of business success. Act on them.

Educate your buddies in business by sharing with them what you have learnt. Simply click the sharing buttons below. Together, let’s make this world a better place.

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