What it takes to be a great leader

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In life, some things you need to learn the hard way and some you don’t. This applies for the business environment more often than you might think. Given the fact that we’re a part of a fast-paced era in which every second could make or break a business, there are some aspects that may prove essential for your business to prosper. By having a business that is growing constantly you need to make sure that you are able to retain your staff and keep the morale high. We already talked about how you can retain your key employees in a previous article so if you are interested, go check that out.

During the “life” of a business there will always be some high points and some low ones. If the high points are easier to deal with, how can you deal with the low points in the business and still be able to lead by example? In almost every instance when the company is facing difficult times this transcends and is sensed in all corners of the organization. I had the opportunity to work alongside some of the best entrepreneurs out there and I can truly say that I’ve learned some ways in which you can and need to make your employees feel valued and understand that they are the lifeblood of your company.

1. Learn from your mistakes. Every company does mistakes at least once in a while and it’s not all that uncommon. However, what most do not really understand is that you have to learn from those mistakes and avoid doing them again. Assess the situation and determine whether the error made is enormous or just an isolated incident. Don’t rush to fire the employee who made that mistake, but rather determine the impact the mistake will have on the future of your company and then take action. If the mistake is not really all that important, you should continue to keep him in the staff. By doing it, that person will be far more loyal than he ever was. As a result, his performance will automatically increase so that he can prove to you that you made the right decision by keeping him.

2. No hard feelings. Usually when key employees are offered a position at another company and they accept it, in almost every case the manager will give them the cold shoulder. You probably all know the stories about Bloomberg and what happens when employees resign. In every instance, when a person decided to resign from the company he or she was shown the way out without even offering them a handshake or uttering the cliché phrase “best luck in your future endeavors”. I do not consider this approach to be the best approach. Word travels fast and future employees will be reluctant to join your team. Moreover, by applying the “Bloomberg approach” the remaining staff will be far more affected than the employee leaving. Instead, ask them for feedback (good and bad) regarding their time at the company and approach the situation as a gentleman would.

3. Have you read the book Soar with Your Strengths? If not, you definitely should, it will be worth your money. The first thing I learned from the very beginning was toplace your employee in a position where they can best use their strengths rather than teaching them how to improve their weaknesses. By doing this, time management will never be an issue. You should take a moment and think about it. Also, assess where your employees are on your priority list and how you can help with their progress so that the company will benefit.

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