Leadership Skills to Help you Advance your Small Business

All great leaders have a few things in common.  Here are a few qualities and traits of great leaders that you can learn, practice, and apply to help your small business grow. 

-Self-Awareness: Effective leaders periodically take stock of personal strengths and shortcomings.  Knowing your weaknesses does not make you weak, it makes you more effective.  Knowing the areas you might not be as strong allows you to delegate tasks to those that might be better suited for certain tasks.  Self-reflection can also help you to hire those that will compliment your style, rather than work counter productively.  Working on your areas of weakness will improve your ability to lead.

-Perception: Perception and Self-Awareness go hand in hand.  No matter how many self-evaluations your conduct; perception is reality.  If a customer feels you are not a great listener, then you are not a great listener.  Asking your coworkers and customers for honest feedback, being open to what they have to say and constructively working on those areas will only make you stronger. 

-Responsiveness: Being perceptive can also help you be a more effective leader by knowing the needs of your team and your customers.  A leader is someone who finds out if their clients value creativity over trust; or if their organization prefers organization versus communication.  Building a strong team or client base is more effective when you know the goals and values of each individual. 

-Supportive: Support and responsiveness go hand in hand.  Great leaders are sincerely concerned for the welfare of the people they work with.  Leaders act as support staff to guide those around them through challenges and look for long-term solutions to foster success.  It is important to be supportive of individuals that need special attention, while not putting an unnecessary burden on the rest of your organization. 

-Honest, organized, and together: Great leaders are honest people, are organized, and can plan ahead.  They treat people the way they want to be treated.  They respect themselves and take others’ feelings into consideration.  They also know that making a lasting impact, they need to think analytically and plan ahead.  Great leaders know how to lead with their head and their heart. 

A leader’s responsibility is to help their organization and their clients to grow and prosper.  Using these techniques will prepare you to become a more effective leader in the future and will help your business grow that much faster.