How to Be a Better Business Leader

Javi Fondevila

Being successful in business, especially when operating in the modern commercial climate, requires more than just a good idea, some start-up capital, and project management skills. Whilst these are important, success comes with being a good leader and employing good business practices, and there are many inherent qualities and different ways you can go about this and being a good leader.

Without a doubt, one of the most important traits of any successful businessperson is somebody who has a keen ear and sharp mind. Throughout your time in business, you will hear thoughts, opinions, advice, and criticisms coming from virtually everyone. Some of it will be good, some will be bad, but it can all make the difference to your overall success.

Becoming a Better Business Leader

To help you with this, we have come up with a few key ways you can develop yourself as a business leader and be more successful.

1. Be open to criticism

Running a business isn’t plain sailing and you will hit bumps in the road, and some of these bumps will be negative feedback and criticism. Although you may not want to hear it and could be tempted to write it off as not carrying any weight, you should avoid doing this. New business owners tend to resist criticism, usually to their detriment, even though constructive negative criticism has lots of value. Listen to what people have to say!

2. Be good at project management

In the earliest days of your business, you will need good project management. You may be one of a very few staff members—you may even be the only employee at your company—and so good project management is key to meeting your goals and targets. Whilst good project management skills are great, using the right tools and pieces of software can make a huge difference to how things are handled.

3. Don’t be afraid to ask questions

After all, nobody is ever as smart as they think they are. You should ask as many questions as you can to try and help yourself learn and develop throughout your business journey. When you’ve asked these questions, no matter who you are asking them to, you should button up and listen to what the person has to say. There’s no shame in asking questions, either… you can’t be expected to know everything, and you can be certain that nobody does.

4. Give 110 percent all the time

For entrepreneurs and business operators, especially during the early days, the notion of a ‘work-life balance’ simply doesn’t exist. When you are running your start-up and steering it through its earliest days, you are the same person when you are at home and work. You should give 110 percent and always bring your whole self to the table so that you can apply your thoughts, feelings, insights, and knowledge—both personal and professional—to every situation you find yourself in.

5. Do things even if you don’t feel ready to

If you constantly wait around and hold off doing things until you feel ‘ready’, you will never get anything done. Not feeling ready can seriously paralyze your business as key decision-making is delayed, often until it’s too late or the perfect opportunity has passed, and this leads to stunted long-term growth. Showing up and getting things done, even when you don’t feel like you are ready to, is simply part of doing business. You should always push yourself to do your very best and make decisions when it is commercially viable and beneficial to do so, not when you feel ‘ready’, whatever ‘ready’ means.

Being a Better Leader Starts with You

You are the only person equipped to deal with your own shortcomings. Running a business successfully and being a good leader is all about being a good people person, taking calculated risks, not holding back due to your own personal qualms, and having a knack for project management.

By dealing with the issue of being a better leader early-on, you will find that when it comes to bringing staff on-board that they are more open to you, receptive and inspired—you are somebody that people will look up to and you need to prepare yourself for that.

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