How to Become a Great Business Leader

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Have you made the transition yet? With a few tips from this leadership expert, you can learn to become a great business leader.

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Patty Vogan. This article was accessed via Cisco Institute.

Long before you became an entrepreneur, I bet you remember saying to yourself, "One day, I'll own my own business!" People around the world have been saying those same words, some as early as 10 years old and others well into their 80s, with both excitement in their voice and a sparkle in their eye.

But when you thought of owning your own business, my guess is, your thoughts probably centered on the type of business you'd be starting. You dreamed of launching your own restaurant or construction company or taking over the family insurance company. You thought about how to make money and how to survive while ramping up. And how to run the business better and faster than your competition. Your first thoughts were probably not focused on the people that would be working for you or what type of leader you'd be.

At this point, you've most likely proven yourself to be a successful business owner...but have you proven yourself to be an effective leader?

Here's how you can find out. Take a few minutes and answer these questions for yourself:

– Are you happy coming to work everyday and do you enjoy the people you hired to work with you?

– Have you created a positive environment for yourself and your employees?

– Do your employees feel comfortable coming to you with questions or problems? How do you know this for sure?

– Have you developed the best focus for the business, yourself and your employees?

– Do you really have the right people working in your business?

If you answered yes to most of these questions, then you've become an effective leader. But what if you answered no or you weren't sure? Don't feel bad – you're simply a business owner who needs to grow as a leader.

It's very easy to get caught up being the business owner and forget about the importance of being an effective leader in your business. Because those daily details can bog you down to the point where you forget that your employees need your time and attentionand need the guidance that only you, as the business's owner, can give them.

Think you could use a little help to become a better leader of people? Here are a few helpful hints to get you started:

– The business's leader and employees know the strategic focus of the company and how to articulate it clearly and simply to anyone.

– As the leader, you need to help your employees see how their position relates to your company's strategic focus and tell them how important they are

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