Eric Anderson, Scientifically Speaking
Being an entrepreneur is the toughest job a person can have. You are tasked with taking a vision and growing it into a product or service that people will pay money for. However, the company is only going to grow to a certain point without a team. The “solo-preneur” is now tasked with communicating that story and moving a team in a direction that inspires and motivates.
Being an effective leader is about more than just motivating the team with financial incentives and rewards. True leadership involves bringing out the best in a person so they share your vision of success. Here are the five skills entrepreneurial leaders need to grow themselves, their company and their team.
1. Knowledge - Greek philosophers once inscribed on a temple wall “Know Thyself.” Leaders must truly understand the motivation of why they started the businesses. They must be “brutally honest” with
themselves about their strengths, weaknesses and areas of development.
2. Vision - Entrepreneurial leaders, similar to Chessmasters, must be able to think 3 - 4 moves ahead. They must have a belief for where their industry is going and how they are going to get there. This strategic approach is a key reasons military and business leaders succeed.
3. Courage - Entrepreneurs have to make tough decisions in human resources, financial management and organizational effectiveness. These decisions, however, must be made for the good of the business
and the people. Others may not always like the decisions chosen, but entrepreneurial leaders must have the courage to make them.
4. Listening - I like to talk, and I have built a pretty good career around it. Effective leaders know how to listen to clients, employees and mentors. By listening to people, entrepreneurial leaders make decisions based on facts and information from a variety of sources.
5. Stay hungry - Steve Jobs famously told students at the 2005 Stanford University commencement, “Stay hungry; stay foolish.” Leaders must always learn. They must be students of information and knowledge. Doctors, accountants and teachers continue to improve their craft, even after graduating. There is no graduation from leadership; true leaders are always working to improve. Great leaders make it look easy. They smile. They laugh. And they make tough decisions quickly. People don’t see the work that goes into developing an entrepreneurial leader. Customers, employees and colleagues only see the results. Those results, not measured in dollars, are the crown of effective and respected leaders.
Scientifically Speaking, of course.