When you’re on a highly responsible position such as the very top of a company, no matter whether it’s big or small, you need to be extraordinarily introspective. The reason that supports this statement alone is quite simple – a leader will either drive the whole thing right into the ground or elevate a business to new heights, which is something a boss can’t do.
That being said, it’s quite important for you to realize what separates these two professions, so to speak, because there’s a very thick crowbar of separation here. If you do want to be a leader who people around you will want to follow, you need to work on yourself.
Know the Difference
A person you’d use the word boss for is that intimidating someone you only know exists because you see them walking down the office every now and then when they head towards their huge office designed by an overpriced brand.
A leader is a person you’re comfortable being around and you have no issues trust-wise, so you can share your biggest fears and the most creative ideas with them without a second thought.
Influence Instead of Authority
A true leader never says “because I said so”. This argument barely works on children, let alone grown adults who got educated in order to become qualified for a certain job position, so it’s everything but common sense to boss them around.
What characterizes leaders is their ability to influence. The phrase you’re look for is “let me show you” which is exactly what can turn indifferent employees into loyal followers that share your goal.
Charisma is another important feature in leaders – it’s significantly less difficult to make a circle of loyal employees if you’re born with it. However, this is another skill you can learn and develop in time, so don’t worry.
Anyway, with the development of this kind of influence on people around you comes a great responsibility. As a head of a business, people will look up to you, whether they realize it or not, and your behavior is a role model to them. Therefore – the very next time you feel like you have the power to make a change in the life of your employee, make sure it’s positive. The bottom line is that your whole office will imitate your work ethics and you should be aware of that.
Don’t Hog the Spotlight
Greedy bosses watch their team like if it were manpower that will take them to billions overnight and they won’t stop with the exploitation until they get there – this is one certain recipe that will take any company, no matter how promising its future is, to bankruptcy. Mistreated employees will realize their position in time and they most definitely will try their luck someplace else.
On the other hand, a leader shares their spotlight and they don’t have a problem with sharing their money, as well. Another important feature of true leaders is they actually listen to their team members and make room for them to grow and develop, which will reflect on the business itself.
Be a Part of Your Team
It’s not nearly enough for you to mingle occasionally through your office and exchange a pleasantry or two with the people who work for you. This expression is wrong actually – you work together and each member should be equally appreciated.
A boss finds it easy to fire and replace members of their staff at the first sign of trouble. Opposed to that, a leader will examine a particular situation closely, draw out objective conclusions and make a decision that’s unselfish and fair.
You as a leader should not attempt to find people that share your mindset, your qualities and your ideas – a business can flourish when a company is based on a variety of expert knowledge and points of view. I recently read a very interesting article on Forbes on this subject, and an entrepreneur named Per Wickstrom offered an observation I’d like to share with you.
“The problem with the pacesetter is they are unable to see the business from the point of view of the employee. It’s difficult for them to accept that nobody is ever going to be as passionate or as hard working as them because it’s their child. I believe that business owners should be employees rather than bosses so they can understand this point of view.”
This article I mentioned also speaks about why various startups which have great chances for success fail – bosses who run them only have investors in mind, which prevents them from taking good care of their team and that can only lead to further neglecting.
When leading a business, you need to commit to it and treat as if it were your legacy and do so even in the early stages. It’s like planting a delicate plant – you need to nurture it until it grows into a strong fruitful three.
Put Out the Fires
People working together results in a conflict every now and then. No matter if its nature is social, professional or moral, you should treat each situation patiently and with a desire to discover its source and resolve it accordingly.
A boss would pass on this problem to the right department and let them deal with conflict, but not all situations can be subjected to a company policy and my sincere suggestion is to get involved yourself. This scale begins with gossips and ends with rights violation, which is why it’s quite a necessity to be aware of both sides of a story so your conscious is clear.
Many people worldwide go to bed and spend hours dreaming about how much they would enjoy a prestigious position like this, and although the title is tempting its job description is very extensive. Being a leader requires personal sacrifice and constant development, and it’s not a job anyone can do – so, be careful what you wish for.
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