In the past we’ve come across some great leader all budding entrepreneurs could learn valuable lessons from. Leaders like Mahatma Gandhi were able to mobilise the population of a whole country and made them unite against a common enemy, the British. The movement penetrated down to the peasants who revolted against the British malpractices and in the end, India gained independence.
In the entrepreneurial world, we’ve seen various great leaders such as Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Binny and Sachin Bansal etc. An entrepreneur needs to be a great leader to motivate his team and make them work as a single entity towards a common goal.
However, not all entrepreneurs are born leaders so here are lessons which will help them emerge as great leaders:
1. Almost all leaders are self taught
There is so course or college which teaches leadership skills. Management teaches the major aspects of leadership but cannot make a leader out of you. Moreover, everyone’s style of leadership is different which is why it’s best if you teach yourself and find your way.
Some leaders are empathetic, while most are a combination of sternness and empathy. You need to find how you want to be perceived and try and learn from leaders who inspire you.
2. Delegation is an art
It delegation might seem like the easiest thing to do but it actually is an art. Delegation doesn’t simply mean handing over tasks to people who are accomplished in their fields. You actually need to find people who you believe are appropriate for the company and hire them. It is a huge responsibility because you trust them with the company’s vision. For instance, if you want an advertiser to make an ad for a product, you are handing him the responsibility of how your product will be perceived by customers.
Thus, it is a huge task and needs to be done well.
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3. Keep learning
As a leader, it is also essential to be able to accept criticism and learn constantly because it might be your first time as well. A leader needs to be a good listener because only then can he work out strategies and make his employees feel more empowered and involved in the whole process. An employee in your company might be more experienced and have a brilliant idea and if an entrepreneur lets ego come in his way, he will be losing out on an opportunity of making his company succeed. Hence, it is important to be open to suggestions and be objective about them.
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4. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes
You’re just starting out so you’re bound to make mistakes. Don’t be afraid to make them because mistakes are our best teachers. We learn valuable and important lessons from them. Also, don’t be afraid to let your team members take risks in terms of the venture because that will help them learn and excel in their respective fields as well.
5. Try servant leadership
While servant leadership is a timeless concept, the phrase “servant leadership” was coined by Robert K. Greenleaf in The Servant as Leader, an essay that he first published in 1970. In that essay, Greenleaf said:
“The servant-leader is servant first… It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead. That person is sharply different from one who is leader first, perhaps because of the need to assuage an unusual power drive or to acquire material possessions…The leader-first and the servant-first are two extreme types. Between them there are shadings and blends that are part of the infinite variety of human nature.
A servant leader focuses more on the growth aspect of the company and even though he’s more powerful than others, he puts his employees’ well-being above all else.
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