Being a great business leader is tough. There’s no magic formula because everyone’s company and leadership style are unique. What works for one person seldom works for another.
This doesn’t mean you can’t improve your leadership skills, though. Here are many simple principles you can follow to become a better marketing leader today:
Be the least talented person in the room
A good leader hires great people. You shouldn’t be afraid of hiring more able people than yourself. After all, you are only the figurehead of a large entity, all of whom should be driving the company forward in their own fields. Many bosses are anxious about having their job taken away from them or being shown up by their employees. This is counter-productive. Your role is to make sure the company keeps growing and improving. Even a genius can’t do it alone.
Listen to new ideas, but don’t let them paralyse you
That is to say, don’t be swept up by every gimmick in digital marketing. Being a leader means keeping your business on a steady course, even when there are distractions all around you. Of course, you should listen to your colleagues and implement the latest industry innovations, but don’t be hurried into a knee-jerk reaction.
While every decision you make should be reasoned and measured, you cannot afford to procrastinate. The role of a good leader is to have the confidence to direct the correct course of action, even if it means making a difficult or unpopular decision. You don’t have to do this alone. There is plenty of tactics and technology to help you make quick decisions. Here’s How to Accelerate Your Decision-Making Velocity.
Have a foot in every camp
If you want to be a better business leader, you need to understand what it is you’re leading. If your company has many different departments, take the time to understand how each one of them works. It doesn’t mean you have to be an expert it could negatively impact your ability to lead – but a basic understanding of each department or skill set is hugely beneficial, and you’ll make more informed decisions in the future.
Talk to your staff and customers
You’d be astonished how many business leaders have no idea what their customers or even their own staff think about the company or the product. One of the worst traps you can fall in as a leader in isolation. Whether it’s because your colleagues are too nervous about speaking their mind around you or because you never actually use the product or interact with customers, this can destroy your abilities to lead effectively.
Thankfully, it’s easy to fix. Spend time on the phone or out on the street with customers. Ask your staff what they think about the product, or how they could improve it. Most of all, make yourself accessible to your staff and customers alike. After all, they make all the difference to your brand.