It’s easy to come up with a list of great leaders, isn’t it?
Warren Buffett. Bill Gates. Jeff Bezos. Martin Luther King, Jr. Nelson Mandela. And, just for good measure, let’s add in Angela Merkel to swing the gender balance a bit.
What a mixed bag I’ve chosen, right? I’m sure you can think of more!
However, the point is, they’re all well-known in their own way for their leadership abilities.
So, what actually makes a good leader and how can you incorporate those attributes with your leadership style at your wedding business?
First of all, do all businesses, large and small, need great leaders?
Of course. No-brainer, right?
One of the things I’ve noted about every single person on my “great leaders” list is that others wanted to be led by these individuals.
I’ll venture to say that natural ability shaped their leadership style—and the added benefit of a charismatic personality didn’t hurt, either. But do you think all of them woke up one day and knew exactly how to lead?
No, probably not. They worked at it. There was plenty of trial and error. And then they likely had three attributes that I think helped them succeed:
- The ability to empower others.
We’ll discuss all three in just a second. First, though, I wanted to insert some real-life examples.
In writing this post, I leaned on a friend’s help. I asked her if she has a boss who’s a good leader—and I’ll be honest. I sort of anticipated her answer.
She laughed and said, “Well, in my current job, my boss doesn’t listen, doesn’t seem to care about me, and micromanages everything I do.”
Yeah. There are so many of those “leaders” around, aren’t there?
Needless to say, my friend is looking for another job.
However, I know someone else who won the boss lottery. When I asked this friend about his boss he gushed. “My boss is so excited about coming to work every day, and it’s totally infectious. He has a vision for our sales department and all of us want to do our best for him.”
He went on to say that he could work for the same boss for the rest of his life and be forever happy.
How can you ensure that you’re doing that for your employees? Or do you know in your heart of hearts that your employees and your business are running you, not the other way around?
The best thing about learning how to lead is that you can learn how to lead. A quick Google or Amazon search can show you that—it’s undoubtedly a multimillion dollar industry!
Pick up a book about leadership (there are so many different philosophies on leadership, too) and get to readin’.
#1 – Passion
So, let’s go back to our list. Are you leading with passion?
How do you know? Well, are you excited about going to work every day? Are you more than thrilled to work on a Saturday?
Believe me, your employees can detect whether you have the passion for your wedding business—and can figure it out, too, if you’re just going through the motions.
If you’re not loving it, you can’t lead effectively.
#2 – Vision
Vision is another one of those biggies. Do you have big plans for your wedding business? No “big” plans? Do you at least have a vision that will hold steady through the end of the week?
If you don’t have goals, you’re floundering. If you don’t have benchmarks, you need them.
It’s just like you have goals for your life, such as, “I want to celebrate my 10-year anniversary of my wedding business by taking all of my employees to Mexico, so I will need to do X, Y, and Z to make that happen.” You need specific goals like that for your wedding business, too.
Seems elementary, but especially for small businesses—it’s crucial.
By the way, wouldn’t your employees all love you then? Mexico, it is! Ha!
#3 – Empowering Others
Remember my friend whose boss is a major micromanager? (Yeah, don’t be like that.)
Believe it or not, even if you are the CEO of your wedding business, leading isn’t about you. It’s about others.
If that’s a revelation to you, reality check! It’s really, really true.
Have you ever heard of the term, “Right bus, right seats?”
You get the right people off the bus, the wrong people off the bus, and the right people in the right seats.
And then, once you have the right people in all the right seats, and with you leading the bus, empower them all.
Let them do their jobs—because there’s a reason you hired good people to begin with.
Ease up, relax, and then all you’ll need to do is make gentle steering corrections with the bus. As for the big picture, the rest of ‘em have got it covered.
Learn All You Can
Again, you can learn to be a better leader, and even if you know you haven’t been leading the way you think you should be, stop cringing and learn more. Take a class, read a book, watch a YouTube video. We aren’t perfect at everything—and even the things that we do well, we can learn to improve.
I recently read the book Leadership Attitude by Australian Sonia McDonald, CEO and founder of LeadershipHQ, and that’s where I got some of my ideas for this post.
Learning more can only be a good thing—read all the books, posts, blogs, listen to podcasts—anything you can get your hands on!
Hopefully, soon, my friend with the wonderful boss will sound a lot like—you.
What is your leadership style?