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10 Essential Leadership Skills Every Entrepreneur Should Continually Hone

By News Creatives Authors , in Small Business , at November 4, 2021

For most entrepreneurs, the early days of their business entail doing most of the day-to-day work themselves. However, as your business grows, so will your need to hire and effectively manage others. Expanding your team requires you to hone your leadership skills, as well as a strategic vision to keep your team on track.

To help, 10 members of Young Entrepreneur Council share some essential leadership skills that every entrepreneur should nurture. Follow their recommendations to improve your management abilities and foster a strong business culture.

1. Listening To Understand

Listening is one skill you should continue to nurture over the years. The more successful you become, the easier it is to simply take your opinion while accepting it as the end all be all. Having humility and remembering to hear out another person will keep your business from plateauing or crashing. When you listen to someone else, you get their perspective on a situation. What’s more, you may learn something that you haven’t considered before. For example, a marketer may know about a new potential technology that could adjust to changes in Google algorithm updates. That information is crucial for marketing agencies, so they can adjust their services. – Duran InciOptimum7

2. Emotional Intelligence

Communications and emotional intelligence are always high on my list for continual improvement. Though leaders may grow more comfortable with their communications style (and their team may also grow more comfortable or accommodating) this doesn’t actually mean you’re improving. Entrepreneurs and other leaders, regardless of organizational affiliation, should continually evaluate their communications style, delivery, verbal/nonverbal mix, emotional intelligence, ability to coach and other important aspects of working within a team. – Christopher TarantinoEpicenter Innovation

3. Ability To Delegate

Every year, a strong leader should take 70% of their work tasks completely off their plate, and pass them on to the next in command (this continues down the entire chain). Delegation is a skill that entrepreneurs must continually develop. Successful delegation ensures that we avoid decision fatigue and burnout and that we are constantly learning new skills and moving the company forward. – Rachel BeiderPRESS Modern Massage

4. Strategic Thinking

In my view, one skill that you must continue to work on is strategic thinking and acting. According to Harvard Business Review, today’s businesses must be fluid and quick to change, which is why strategic thinkers are among the most effective CEOs. In the report, HBR discovered that a strategic approach to leadership was 10 times more significant than other behaviors tested, such as communication and hands-on tactical behaviors, in terms of perceived effectiveness. Strategic thinkers approach problem-solving and decision-making from a broad, long-term perspective that includes objective analysis, foresight and planning. Leaders must consider the best path to achieving outcomes that exceed the expectations of those they serve. – Baruch LabunskiRank Secure

5. Communication

Communication is a skill every leader should continue to work on. No two people communicate the same way, and with how many people business leaders and CEOs engage with—employees, investors, clients, partners, publicists, audiences, contractors, etc – having a wide arsenal of communication styles is key. A good communicator should be able to adapt their style to whoever they’re speaking with, be able to communicate their message clearly and in as direct of a way as possible and know when to keep it formal and when it’s appropriate to be more casual. An effective communicator takes their cues from the other party, so improving and sharpening this skill is something that can only happen over time as you engage with a larger variety of people – Leila LewisBe Inspired PR

6. Financial Knowledge

It’s crucial for any business owner to have advanced knowledge about financials, especially the ability to forecast. Forecasting involves using past data to predict future success, sales and trends. It’s so important because it’s the driving force behind most company’s decisions and trajectories. The ability to forecast also allows a company to create built-in processes to manage unpredictability and unforeseen events. The key to successful forecasting is to create methodologies that ensure data is directional and credible. The methodology should also include both quantitative and qualitative factors. I would suggest even creating a strategic foresight team for an even greater chance of success for the entrepreneur and the business – Shu SaitoAll Filters

7. First-Principle Mindset

One of the key skills any high-performing leader should implement is developing a first-principle mindset that frames learning in a more structured way. Beginning by learning the most pertinent first principles enables even the most abstract of concepts to be understood. For example, learning the key laws of physics that govern rocket propulsion when you want to understand how to design a more efficient rocket that can travel further with less fuel for higher payloads. Without knowing the first principles, that problem seems insurmountable to those unversed in physics. But there are really only a few physics principles that are pertinent to the rocket problem, not the entirety of physics, so it really comes down to learning those few principles, a much more digestible task. – Richard FongProcessingCard.com

8. Building Trust

Leaders should never stop trying to build trust with their employees no matter what. For a business to run smoothly, it’s crucial to have a cohesive team that works together and trusts you to make the best decisions in their favor. Too many business owners make the mistake of not making trust-building a priority, and this causes miscommunications across the board. You also want your team members to trust you enough to come to you with any issues they’re facing to foster a positive company culture. – Stephanie WellsFormidable Forms

9. Self-Awareness 

It’s important to know your weaknesses. It’s critical as a leader to decide the areas that you’re going to build yourself or support through the recruitment of in-house experts. At some point, enhancing your skillset makes sense, while other times, it’s more time and cost-effective to lean on the expertise of other people. It’s essential to continue developing and making calculated bets on where your time and energy will make the largest impact. Doing this will allow you to gain experience in areas that you may formerly lack while also being honest with when it’s time to utilize the skills of others. Over time, you will end up having more and more strengths through continued learning, whether that’s by learning the skill or delegating. – Tyler QuielGiggster

10. Self-Development

It’s a bit cliché, but business owners should always work on themselves. Your relationship with yourself is something you can always learn something new from, so it’s important to stay well aware of how you’re growing, adapting, and evolving. Being critical of yourself and self-aware is crucial to your decision-making process, especially in business. It shapes your perception of what’s important which can either hinder or prosper your personal and professional life, and in turn your business. Partaking in activities to improve and/or challenge yourself, like meditation, or even discovering new hobbies and interests along the way, is a skill that helps you be at your best. – Emily StallingsCasely, Inc.

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