As a lively entrepreneur, I’m sure you’re interested in becoming a true Business leader: how to inspire, how to get anyone to follow you, how to keep going through problems and brand new projects…
But did you know that there is an intimate relation between your rocky day to day and evolving into a leader?
If you want to sail your boat across any business ocean, you need to embrace change as a constant in the journey. When you run your own business, things rarely go according to plan. All the way through, you have to find your own way. And no one is telling you what to do.
Isn’t developing the drive to be comfortable with change the best way to cultivate your ability to lead?
Ease uncertainty: acknowledge your business situation
When something is not working properly, don’t be afraid to admit that it can’t continue. The shift in perspective might be a little scary, but that’s how you open up new opportunities for your business (and for yourself).
All leaders develop the ability to be assertive and responsive over time, by being clear on “what’s happening”. Open your eyes, take the time to reflect on the situations you face, and command actions that will teach you something new.
Live your Entrepreneur’s evolution with a strong vision
It’s not enough to be conscious that something has to change. You need to know where you’re going, too. It has to be clear to you why and how “different” is better. Think of your driver to move away from the current state. Why would you embark on your mission?
Take the time to consider what is the exact change you want to go for. Going further and exploring new places will fuel confidence as much as your ability to value difference.
Build a team of followers who live through your mission
You can’t force the new to be taken onboard. What’s decisive for success? Growing the charisma that inspires others to adhere to your idea and work alongside you.
But how to do so, in practice? Developing a high-performing team is a delicate balance between achieving results and listening to how they feel about what they do. Ensure everyone is aware they can make the positive difference you envision happen. Support individual contributions. Focus equally on personal growth and performance. And watch for difficult times, where doubt takes over, as a way to strengthen relationships.
Move from a positive achievement to the other
All efficient change managers drive action through near-term wins. Why? Because when there’s still a long way to go, it’s the best way to keep momentum and care for motivation.
Thriving teams are not excited by a vague long term moving target. They’re fired up by the next success.
When you’re in charge, it’s your responsibility to balance day to day challenges with regular success events.
Going through various lenses will refine the way you Lead
One of the positive effects of a change environment is how it challenges your habits. Hunt for small wins, gather what worked well in a similar situation, and see what could be a good attitude to replicate.
Use experience to spot and develop clever habits that you can keep, even in changing environments. Having a solid process you can trust strengthens confidence, and maintains performance, even if you have to fly blind for a while.
Let go of your blinkers
In a flexible environment, what matters most is your direction of travel. Sure, you set your objectives. But at the end of the day, all paths lead to Rome. You only can decide if you enter the city by the South or North gate! Don’t be afraid to be challenged. Create the space for everyone to contribute to your wider objective.
From day 1, they promote an open door policy to suggestions and improvements. They know they can’t see the full picture, and value the perspective of others. It’s not having a monkey mind. It is leadership maturity.
Experimentation is a sure way to drive better long term value
You will probably have to go through unexpected routes to get your clients to fall in love with you. But the side effect is that you create better value for your business along the way, too.
A seasoned leader will reflect on her observations to shape the long term dynamics of the business.
Change is like charity: it starts at home.
You are the first to make the change process a safe place. A wise leader knows that the best way to speed up your expertise is through mistakes and challenges.
Reflect on what is your level of response when you need to adapt. How did you behave with others in challenging situations? Take the time to explore what shifted in yourself. How far did you – as a person – used the energy of transformation at your own advantage?
Many entrepreneurs know the value of flexibility as a way to for continuous learning. But the most fascinating aspect of change events – in my opinion – is how you can use it to expand your own drive, and confidence. Next time things move to a different place, don’t miss out! You just got the best fuel for your own personal development.
How do you embrace change in your journey? Share your story in the comments.