Being an entrepreneur takes more than just a great business idea. It takes hard work, focus and most importantly, leadership. Serving as the head of a team while building a business or implementing a new program means everyone looks to you for guidance and expertise. Read on to learn more about what leadership principles are necessary to be a successful entrepreneur.
High Moral Standards
One of the most important values you can have as an entrepreneur leader is a strong moral compass. There will always be ethical dilemmas when running a business; if you do not practice honesty in your company, chances are this will lead to conflict between you and your employees and clients.
For example, say you own an automobile service company. Someone brings you their car because it is making funny noises. You evaluate the car and determine a simple part replacement will fix the problem. The part costs $100. You advise the customer as such, they pay for the repair, you complete the job and the customer is on their merry way. Taking advantage of this customer’s lack of knowledge and telling them they needed $500 of work, or using a low-quality replacement, would be dishonest. While you may get away with it for the moment, over time customers will start to realize your shady business methods and stop coming to you.
You might also experience an internal ethical dilemma. Say a position opens up and you have multiple people interviewing for the spot. One of the interviewees is a close friend of your acquaintance; this acquaintance offers to hook you up with some perks if you hire their friend. While you might be tempted, it would be unethical to give the candidate the job based on a bribe. This not only reflects poorly on your character but the choice could also impact your business in the long run, especially if the person is not well-suited for the role.
Making Difficult Decisions
Leaders have to be able to make the difficult, and at times unpopular, decisions. Building a business is no easy feat. If it was, everyone would start their own business! Being an entrepreneur requires numerous decisions and more often than not, those decisions are not easy or straightforward. You have to be able to step back and evaluate all potential answers and possible outcomes of those decisions.
Keep in mind, starting something new always involves risks. As mentioned earlier, if there were no risks involved, new businesses would be popping up every day. Being a leader is about weighing those risks to determine which option will benefit your company the most.
Skilled and Educated in the Field
In order to be a successful leader for a new business, you have to have an intricate understanding of the practice itself. The leaders of The Water Heater Company in Oxnard are knowledgeable about the ins-and-outs of water heater maintenance, repair and replacement. If you are well-versed in plumbing, that does not necessarily mean you have the professional eye needed to fix a water heater. Similarly, while you might love planting flowers in your garden, you will likely need further training before opening your own lawn care business. Whatever avenue you pursue, make sure you have the education needed to successfully lead a whole business.
Nobody likes to be critiqued but constructive criticism is necessary for improvement. As the head of your company, you need to handle criticism in a professional and dignified manner. Nobody is going to want to follow someone who loses their temper, shuts down or completely ignores any criticisms that come their way.
On a similar note, it is important you give your employees an opportunity to provide feedback. Businesses cannot succeed if they remain stagnant and fail to grow and change with the times. When you are captain of the entire ship, it can be difficult to know what opportunities there are for improvement in each different sector. Therefore, it is vital that you proactively seek feedback from your teams to learn what can be done to enhance the day-to-day processes.
The backbone of the entrepreneur spirit is perseverance. You are taking an idea and building it into a business from the ground up. That is no easy task. It requires time, dedication and the ability to press on in the face of trials and rejection. Have no doubt, trails will come. Whether it is struggling to get a loan approved, not finding a building within your budget or consumers not purchasing your product, a leader is able to handle the rejections, make adjustments as needed and press on until they succeed. The question is not will trails come but how will you handle them when they do?
Leaders must be highly organized, especially when it comes to getting a company off the ground. When developing your business, there are numerous procedures, processes and documents that need to be established. You need to create a business plan that clearly defines your company’s mission, goals, budget and structure. If you suffer from a lack of organization, creating and maintaining all these items will prove challenging.
Everyone has a system that works best for them, so it is about figuring out what system keeps you organized. If writing helps you retain information, get a planner or notebook and write important details down. If you enjoy technology, consider investing in a program to help maintain and track your items. Determining what works best for you will help ensure the building blocks of your business are clear and safe.
Another principle that great entrepreneur leaders live by is servanthood. This may seem counterproductive. After all, if you are leading an entire business, shouldn’t your team make sure you have everything you need? However, nothing is more attractive to an employee than a boss who is willing to get down in the nitty-gritty with the rest of the crew.
A great way to serve others is by holding regular volunteer projects with your employees. Find some nonprofit organizations that would benefit from volunteer work, such as assisting with a building project or cleaning. Elderly citizens often need help with simple tasks around their house; sacrificing a Saturday to help with errands and cleaning is a great way to exemplify a giving spirit. Reach out to your employees for nonprofit or local resident suggestions.
Another excellent way to serve others is by going out of your way to honor and celebrate your employees. It is helpful to not only recognize the hard work they do but reward them for it too. If you are still getting your business off the ground, your funds are likely limited but do what you can to show your gratitude; your attitude and the gesture is more important than the item itself. Treat the team to lunch, let them take off early on a Friday or coordinate a team event, such as attending a sports game together.
Being an entrepreneur means devoting the majority of your resources to ensure your business succeeds. The last thing you want is to see your business flounder due to a lack of leadership. Make sure you are taking into account the principles that are exemplified in prosperous entrepreneur leaders.