According to the U.S. Bureau of Statistics, in 2019, 20% of all small businesses closed within the first two years, and more businesses closed the longer they stayed open. Only 25% of small businesses remain open after 15 years. If you want to be among that elite 25%, you need to be a great leader, and these four tips will help you become that.
Have a vision
70% of employees would leave their company for another one if the new organization provided a sense of purpose. All entrepreneurs and business owners have a vision, but that vision must be clearly defined and shared with all organization members. Profits are significant, but so are the people you hire, and you have to make sure that those people understand how their jobs positively impact the rest of the company and contribute to the company’s vision.
If you give trust, you’ll receive trust
Trust is a two-way street. So if you want your employees to trust you, you first have to put your trust in them. You can do this by treating your employees like customers, not as underlings. Take time to connect with your employees regularly. You should also prioritize their professional development, recognize their accomplishments, introduce them to your network, and provide feedback continuously.
Don’t listen to your ego
Instead, listen to your advisors (and your employees). As Steve Jobs said, it doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do. You hire smart people so they can tell you what to do. You’ll achieve more if you have people pushing you to do more, just as you want to push your employees to do more. It also helps to have people to bounce your ideas off of and to hold you accountable for what you do.
Keep building the ladder
You can only reach as high as the highest step, so make sure you continuously make the ladder taller and taller so both you and your employees can climb higher. You can do this by constantly growing yourself. Don’t be afraid to change your vision, unlearn things that are no longer working, or learn new ways of doing things.