Yours. Mines. Ours. I could lead you for hours...
Hey Entrepreneurs. I have a questions or two. What kind of business leader are you? Don't know. Okay, so what kind of leader are you becoming?
If you follow me or have read any of my blogs, you know that I am passionate about helping entrepreneurs build sustainable businesses and become healthy business leaders. So let's talk about both today.
Last year, Harvard Business Review released a report that stated "17 % of black women are in the process of starting or running new businesses, compared to just 10% or white women, and15% of white men." However, Forbes added that only 3% continue to sustain mature businesses.
Now there are many reasons why black owned/women owned businesses are struggling to mature however, I want to touch on an important aspect of sustaining.
"In order for our businesses to be sustainable, it requires healthy leadership."
Healthy leadership can be described in many ways depending on who you are asking. So for the sake of being on the same page we are going to use the definition of servant leadership as our healthy leadership model.
Leadership: Theory & Practice by Peter G. Northouse defines a servant leader by stating following, "Servant leaders place the good of followers over there own self-interests and emphasize follower development. They demonstrate strong moral behavior towards followers, the organization and other stakeholders."
Whew. That was lengthy but it was important because even if you are a solo-preneur, a entrepreneur or a small business owner, you are leading something...your BUSINESS. So the question you should be asking yourself is "Where am I leading people to and am I trustworthy to guide them to that place?"
People follow people because they trust them in some way and because they trust their message. Remember, what you are building does not just impact you. It impacts others as well!
To help you grasp this: I want you to think about a person in your life (whether you know them our not) that has greatly impacted you in a positive way. Think about their words, demeanor, and intentionality that has left such a mark on you that you can't erase even now!
You have the power to create that type of experience for those that you serve. You'll have them telling people about you for hours!...and hours. (did you catch the reference?)
Entrepreneur, I'll leave you with this. If you're going to lead them (customers, clients, team) anywhere, lead them to safety not selfishness.