Entrepreneurial Leadership Defined In One Word



What if I told you that there was one word that truly defines leadership? What is that one thing you need to know in order to be great at leading?

Many believe that becoming a great leader is a complicated undertaking, but it doesn’t have to be. I’m not saying that being a great leader is easy, I’m saying that we often make it more complicated than it should be.

So what is the word that defines leadership? Keep reading.


Leadership Is InfluenceFollow the Leader


So what is leadership? Leadership is influence.

In his book, “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership,” John C. Maxwell, leadership expert extraordinaire, says that leadership is influence. Nothing more, nothing less. This means that if you have no influence, you are not leading.

Everything about true leadership comes back to influence. People will not follow you because of your position, role, or intelligence. They will follow you because you have earned the right to influence them. So the obvious question is: “how do you gain influence?” Keep reading, young grasshopper!


Gaining Influence


If leadership is influence, then how do you get influence? Great question! Influence is not something that you gain automatically. It is not something you’re entitled to just because you’re someone’s boss. It’s not something you get because you’re the smartest person in the room.


Influence must be earned.


You earn influence by giving value. That’s it. If you consistently find ways to benefit the people you are trying to influence, you will earn the right to influence them. If you don’t believe me, just take a second and think about the people who have had the most influence in your life. It’s more than likely that each of these people have greatly benefitted you in some way.

The amount of influence you have in any situation will always be directly proportional to the amount of value that you provide. Simply put, if there are people that you wish to influence, find ways to make their lives better.


How To Bring Value


The great thing about providing benefit to those who you intend to lead is that it doesn’t have to be difficult. There are always simple ways to do this in any situation where you want to be a leader.

If you want to earn the right to influence your team, find ways to become valuable to them beyond just a paycheck. Do things to show that you appreciate and care about them.

Here’s some suggestions:

  • Highlight their achievements and victories.
  • Buy them lunch!
  • Reward great performance.
  • Give compliments more than criticism.
  • Invest in their development.
  • Help them learn something new.

It’s the little stuff that matters. Making your employees happy will get them to buy into your vision and follow you, rather than just obey you.

A recent article by Richard Branson (CEO of Virgin) shows the lengths that he goes to in order to make his employees happy. When your team perceives that you can and will look out for their best interests, they won’t hesitate to follow you.

Of course, your employees aren’t the only people you will need to lead. Part of having a successful business means being a thought leader in your industry. If you want to be a thought leader, you must find ways to benefit your followers beyond just selling product. This is especially true when it comes to online marketing.

When you are trying to market your business online, it’s most effective to find ways to benefit your audience instead of promoting your company. Find people who need questions answered and answer them. Give people the benefit of your expertise. Produce content on your website that is designed to provide a valuable benefit to your readers. Doing this will increase your online influence and position you as a thought leader.

Regardless of the situation, finding ways to provide benefits will greatly increase your influence. When you have influence, you will be able to lead.


Being An Entrepreneur Means Being A Leader


Entrepreneurship and leadership are connected. You can’t be a successful entrepreneur without having leadership ability. Fortunately, becoming a better leader doesn’t have to be complicated. Once you truly understand what true leadership is, you will be able to build your business much more effectively.

Focus on earning influence. Look for ways to benefit the people you want to lead. If you do this consistently, you will have followers who are willing to follow you.


Keep moving forward.


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