Here is a pretty startling statistic. Eight out of 10 businesses will fail within 18 months of starting out. That is a staggering 80% that do not make it past two years. Of course, that means there are still 20% that go on to become established and successful. If you are thinking of setting up your own company, then it is naturally key to be in the two out of 10 that do make it. But how is that possible?
Running your own business involves many things that make a difference, from looking after your cashflow to conducting effective marketing campaigns to hook consumers in. While these are all vital, one thing that will make the most difference is how good a leader you are. Strong businesses are built by strong business leaders – once you understand that then you are already a step ahead of most entrepreneurs out there.
Awesome ways to be an effective 21st Century business leader
If you are going to be running your own business, you need to be ready to lead it effectively. That will have a massive bearing on it succeeding and growing as you plan for in the future. Here are some great tips on leading successfully in the modern age.
- Take inspiration from others – the number one mistake that many leaders fall into is trying to work everything out themselves and to do it all on their own. That not only heaps pressure onto you but can also mean you make common mistakes that could have been avoided. A great tip is to look at other business leaders and see what you can learn from their journey. Charles Phillips is one such individual who provides great inspiration for any would be business leader. CEO of Infor, he is a prime example of someone who has shown strong leadership to help his business succeed.
- Learn how to handle conflict – all business leaders will face some conflict at some point. That is just a fact and something that you need to be prepared to deal with. Whether it is a worker who is not performing or a client who may not like the news you need to give them, you have to able to handle it all effectively. If you cannot then you will not be able to make the tough calls needed to protect your business.
- Hire the best talent – it is easy to define yourself as your business when an entrepreneur. That is especially true if you were a one-man band to begin with who has since taken on staff. Being too self-reliant can be a big mistake though as running a successful business means surrounding yourself with the best talent. You will only succeed if the team you have in place is competent and fully committed to what you do. The really smart business leaders will also employ people who fill in gaps they have in their own skill-set to help the business thrive.
- Communicate effectively – communication is a key skill for any business leader especially when dealing with their own staff. Make sure that you keep them in the loop with what is happening at your company and involve them in any major decisions that could affect them. It is also critical to make communication a two-way street. As well as passing on information, be sure to give them a chance to express their views. With all the methods of communication now available, this is not something a 21st Century leader should struggle with.
- Stay relevant – when it comes to modern business, rapidly advancing tech means that your business cannot stand still. Whether it is the latest unified telecoms solutions for better customer service or the latest models of machinery for more efficient working, you need to always be moving forward in how you operate. This will keep your business relevant and avoid it getting left behind by competitors.
- Keep your passion and integrity – people respond to business leaders who show passion and honesty. Once you lose either of those, then you are dead in the water as a leader. Your workers look to you as a source of inspiration and if you lack what is needed to provide it then you are in serious trouble.
Leading in the 21st Century
When looking for ways to lead a business effectively in the modern age, the above are some great tips to start with. The real secret of being a leader is showing your clients and workers positive traits that they can get behind. While this does not mean being a pushover or never showing your steel when needed, it does mean you have to inspire them to follow you. If you show people that they can trust and believe in your vision for the business, then they will follow where you lead.