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4 qualities of successful business leaders
May 26, 2012
You're a leader when you're directing and growing your own company. People call you an entrepreneur. Other leaders direct and grow teams within other people's companies, as CEOs, supervisors, or managers. They're called intrapreneurs.
Both kinds of leaders are still business leaders, and a recent Harvard study of today's successful business leaders reveals that the most effective ones share four qualities in common. These qualities enable them to build high performing teams, build strong relationships with clients, and drive their companies' survival and financial growth.
Here's another finding: not all of them naturally had these qualities from birth. In fact, most of them had to develop them along the way. So the great news is: if they could do it, you could too.
As you review these four qualities, ask yourself which ones you already have and apply to your business, and which ones you still need to strengthen and develop. Then list down three action steps to build on these qualities over the next week. However, make a commitment to really do them. Remember that all our articles here -- no matter how amazingly useful -- will remain "just articles" until you actually put them into action.
Most people think vulnerability is a weakness, but often it's because they have the wrong definition. For leaders, vulnerability means "being able to show others their weakness--when appropriate."
It could mean not pretending that the company is "doing okay and everything's fine" when it's not. It could mean not chewing out an employee when he/she makes a mistake because you can admit that you make mistakes too.
Vulnerability requires a lot of trust on the part of a leader. It's only possible when you trust your team is strong enough to handle the bad news, and that they care enough to do everything they can to help.
In his bestselling book Blink, Malcolm Gladwell reveals that intuition is not "illogical." In fact, it's simply your layers of experience stored in your subconscious mind, telling you the right answer even as your logical mind is still figuring out what to do.
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