Have you moved past the initial steps required to create your very own start-up business? Have you been chugging along, making fairly good progress but you’ve come to the realisation that it’s time to step things up even more? It could be that you need to enhance your own skills and knowledge so that you can be a more informed, confident, and wise business leader.
Becoming a great leader in business typically isn’t something that happens overnight; rather it takes a lot of effort on your part. Enhancing your own leadership skills can certainly help to propel your start-up further ahead, and even get a leg up on the competition. So how do you go about doing that? Well, there are actually a few key steps you can take that will help you to become a more effective and confident leader in the business world, which will obviously increase the odds of success for your own start-up.
So, let’s jump right in with five of the most essential steps.
Don’t Close the Door on Education
Just because you’ve opened your own start up and enjoyed a decent amount of success so far, doesn’t mean it’s time to close the door on education. Education can arm you with a vast amount of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques that truly propel you to the next stage of business leadership.
Take the MBA distance learning UK programme through Aston University as an example. It is designed for people just like yourself who are working professionalsthat want to rank higher, learn how to think like a leader, make impactful decisions, and execute the steps necessary.Some of the top benefits in the program include:
- You can complete the MBA programme in two years.
- The entire programme is completed online – there is never a need to attend a campus in-person.
- You can continue to work and run your own business while enhancing your skills and knowledge and earning your degree.
- Make meaningful connections with peers and industry leaders that can prove to be extremely helpful in your future career.
Education can have a massive impact on just how well you are able to run your business, so you should never think of it as over and done with.
Be Part of the Team Rather Than Lording Over It
As a business leader, your focus is to obviously lead a team – your staff – to reach goals and milestones of the company. Here's the thing – often you can get much better results if you work with them rather than just direct them in what to do.
So, what makes a good leader? There are a few things that stand out:
- A great leader is one that knows how to be part of a team, rather than lording over it.
- A great leader is able to speak just as well as listen – they have excellent communication skills.
- A great leader encourages others to share their ideas, contribute to the overall success of the company, and they do the same.
- A great leader doesn’t seem themselves as better than everyone else – it goes back to being a team player.
Now that doesn’t mean you have to be down in the trenches with them every day and all day, but showing that you don’t mind putting in the same effort as your employees can bring about a lot of respect from your staff.
Show Your Humble Side
Another thing that you want to work on is showing your humble side. Often people mistake cockiness for an attribute that leaders need to have. Instead, it's about confidence and being humble. No one is perfect, and the faster you accept this, and show that you embrace it, the more approachable you are. It helps to foster a more positive atmosphere in the workplace, and it also takes some of the stress and expectations off your own plate.
So, how do you show your humble side? Don't be afraid to be honest when you make a mistake for starters. Acknowledge your mistake, be gracious, be positive, and learn from it. By treating mistakes in this manner, you are also setting up the expectations for them. You would expect for them to act the same way if they make a mistake.
Foster Business Relationships and Connections
In order to be a great leader, you will also want to put energy into building a strong business network. This means vendors, suppliers, manufacturers, investors, customers, clients, and so forth. Effort should be made to foster these connections on a regular basis, never slacking off and assuming the relationships will be fine on their own.
Some of the best avenues and places to foster these connections are:
- Industry events
- Local events
Learn to Delegate
Here's a tip that may seem counter-productive when you're trying to be a more effective business leader. Learning how and when to delegate, however, is a cornerstone for any successful business leader. You have to know when you’ve taken on too much, over-stretched yourself, and when things are outside your area of knowledge or expertise. If you insist on doing everything yourself just to prove some point about being a leader, you’re bound to make costly mistakes.
So, when should you delegate? These are the perfect opportunities:
- When you don’t have the time available to complete the task.
- When the task requires skills and knowledge that you don’t possess.
- When it is a task that really doesn’t need your attention specifically.
- If you find yourself postponing projects, and not being able to take on new clients because “you don't have the time”.
Now, as for the steps to take when you are choosing who to delegate the tasks to, and how to divide the work, there are all kinds of guides and tips you can find online. They can walk you through the process and take some of the questions out of the mix.
Becoming a True Leader Takes Effort
As you can see, becoming a true leader in the business world isn’t something that just happens at the snap of fingers; rather it takes a lot of conscious effort and time on your part. It’s also something you will continually need to work on if you hope to be successful.