Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “A good leader inspires people to have confidence in the leader, a great leader inspires people to have confidence in themselves.” But, becoming a great leader isn’t easy. Successfully maneuvering a team through the ups and downs of starting a new business can be one of the greatest challenges a small-business owner faces.
John Maxwell, a favorite of several of my Tucson CEO Vistage members said, “You work hard to develop your product or service. You fight to solve your financial issues. You go out and promote your business and sell your product. But you don’t think enough about leading your own people and finding the best staff.”
Number 10 is simply “Stay Calm.” During the recent recession, one of the strategies most often ignored was simply to smile, to convey that while the world was in chaos, you had things relatively under control.
Number 9 is “Keep Your People Engaged.” Great leaders give their teams challenges and get them excited about them, says leadership expert Stephen Covey, author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People (Free Press, 1989). He pointed to the example of a small pizza shop in a moderate-sized town that was killing a big fast-food chain in sales. The big difference between the chain and the small pizza joint was the leader, he says.