18/04/2024
Leadership and management

How to Succeed in Leadership and Management as a Business Owner or Manager

I have been fortunate enough to have had many leadership and management roles during my time in business. This has given me a unique insight into just how important key leadership and management skills are. Without them, navigating the complexities of leading a successful team is difficult. It’s not enough to boast about your communication skills or have a vague idea of how to handle team building. Succeeding in leadership and management roles means looking at company culture as a whole, and creating a working environment that employees thrive in. Regardless of whether you are a business owner or manager, the success of your team relies on how you approach leadership as a whole. 

Leadership and Management Skills Every Business Owner Needs

As a business owner or manager, there are a handful of skills that you can’t do without, including:

  • Communication Skills – Strong communication skills are vital for effectively conveying your vision, goals and expectations to your team. It involves actively listening to others, clear articulation, and having the ability to adapt your communication style to different audiences. After all, your team is made up of different people, and people respond well to different communication techniques. 
  • Team Building – Building and leading a cohesive and high performing team is crucial for business success. But, this doesn’t always come naturally in business. Though some teams gel and work well together from the beginning, the majority of workforces need some level of team building. This includes recruiting and hiring the right people, fostering a positive work culture, providing guidance and supporting everyone’s individual needs. I’ve worked with a lot of teams and trust me, no two are exactly the same. 
  • Decision Making – As a business owner or manager, a lot of decisions will come down to you. You’ll either be making the decision on your own, or you will have the final call. You will face a number of decisions daily, and you need to be confident in your ability to make the right choice. Developing good decision making skills involves gathering relevant information, analysing the pros and cons, considering different perspectives, and making informed choices in a timely manner. I know it’s hard to trust your decision making abilities at first. But, if you don’t trust yourself, no one else will. 
  • Time Management – If there is one thing that I can guarantee to anyone in a leadership role, it’s that you will often have to juggle multiple responsibilities and tasks at once. This is something I have to manage on a daily basis, but it does get slightly easier with practice. Effective time management skills involve prioritising tasks, setting realistic deadlines, delegating when necessary and allocating time to various activities. Without time management skills, anyone in a management or leadership position is likely to stumble the second the workload begins to build up.
  • Continuous Learning – I consider myself to be a successful entrepreneur – otherwise, I wouldn’t have this website and I wouldn’t be dishing out business advice – but even I embrace continuous learning. I am always seeking out opportunities to develop, grow and evolve my business skills. Successful business owners recognise the importance of continuous learning and self improvement. You need to stay updated with industry developments, seek opportunities for professional development, and actively grow your knowledge base. It doesn’t matter what industry you are working in, business is constantly evolving and changing. Without continuous learning, you could find yourself out of touch sooner than you would like.

How to Build a Strong Company Culture

Don’t underestimate the importance of having a strong company culture. One of the most important things you can do as a leader or manager is to recognise, reward and appreciate your team members’ efforts. Celebrate milestones, provide meaningful rewards and incentives, and create a positive work environment. Acknowledge and value the contributions of individuals and teams.

As a leader, your actions and behaviours set the tone for your team. Model the values and behaviours that you want to see in your team members, and they are likely to follow suit. Think about it, you can’t expect one thing from them, and then do the opposite yourself. Trust your team members and empower them to take ownership of their work. Trust them to do the right thing, to work hard and to conduct themselves professionally. Delegate tasks and responsibilities based on their strengths and capabilities. Provide guidance and support when needed and encourage autonomy and growth. All of these actions lead to employees that feel supported and understood, which helps to build a strong company culture.

You should also encourage a collaborative and inclusive working environment. Foster a sense of teamwork and unity by promoting collaboration between teams, facilitating open communication channels, and recognising diverse perspectives and contributions. Your team is made up of people with different backgrounds, cultures, interests and experiences. Encouraging people to work together helps to make everyone feel included and ‘seen’, rather than feeling like a simple cog in the machine. 

When you first took on a leadership and management role, what was the biggest hurdle that you had to overcome?

Written by
Scott Dylan
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Scott Dylan

Scott Dylan

Scott Dylan

I’m Scott Dylan, Inc & Co Co-Founder. I oversee the company's strategic direction and work to acquire and invest in distressed and viable companies, helping businesses improve their business processes and setting strategic directions.

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