Are Leaders Made Or Born?

Leadership

In last week’s posting, I wrote about the traits leaders have.  Now you may not agree with me on the traits that you would put on your list.  However, it would be hard to dispute that true leaders do not have the traits I pointed out (Integrity, Empowerment, Skills/Intelligence, Inspiring, Imaginative, Courageous).

But as I was writing that blog post, another thought came into my mind…”Are true leaders born?  Or can they learn to be leaders?”  If you Google that, 33.8 million articles are found from some sites like Forbes, but also academic, leadership, and psychological industry sites.

Again, I am talking about true leaders.  Not the people who are in a leadership role by title only or those in an authority position that could not lead an ant to a picnic, or lead a group if their life depended on it.  I am talking about a real leader.

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Traits of Leadership

Leadership

One of the activities I volunteer for helps with young people learn real world tools and leadership.  This is all done under the guise of having fun and organizational structure, but is much more intentional than that.  It is a quality that so many need and, in many instances, do not possess.

Just because a person is in a position of leadership, does not necessarily mean they have it.  I have had managers in the past who were leaders by title.  However, when it came to it, they did not have the actual qualities of leadership.

So what are the qualities of a true leader?

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The First Thing Entrepreneurs Need To Be Successful…Focus

Inspired EntrepreneurshipThe other day Merriam-Webster’s released a list of 15 new words added to this year’s Collegiate Dictionary. I am sure by now you have heard some of the ones included. Some of the new words include man cave, systemic risk, and cloud computing. With our ever expanding language, you are bound to hear new words all the time.

Well, yesterday for me, was one of those times. I was ant an event last night and I heard the term “entrepreneurs disease”. I will have to admit that I never heard that one, even though I am around entrepreneurs all the time. It’s definition, although not Merriam-Webster quality, is the basic lack of focus entrepreneurs have because they have multiple concepts and ideas they could pursue. These concepts and ideas may or may not be related to each other.
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Determining Your Passion

PassionYesterday morning, I had the great opportunity to have breakfast with and network with with a group primarily made up of small business owners.  The purpose of this group to get together is to help make each other successful by providing thoughts and suggestions on issues that are coming up in their business.  You can relate it to an informal Board of Directors or Advisors.

One of the topics that was brought up was that we all know can easily tell someone what we do.  However, most people, even in professional settings, do not really care.  What came out of the discussion was the why we do what we do.  As an exercise, we were to quickly write down out what and our why.  This is what I initially wrote down: Read more of this post

Eight Things I Learned About Business At The Masters

The 2012 MastersDon’t be jealous sports and golf fans, but I had tickets to Wednesday’s practice round to The Masters.  Although I am a self proclaimed hacker, I truly enjoy playing as much as I can.  It is never enough, though.

Afterwards as I reflected on the day, the sights, and the sounds, I realized that my day was a lot like a typical day at work.  There are things I saw and experienced there that can be applied on a daily basis in a business.  Here are 8 things I learned about business at The Masters.

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The ABC’s of Business

Sold Home For Sale Sign in Front of New HouseOwning and running a business is not as easy as reciting your ABC’s, but the basics of business can be just as easily remembered. 

Here is the first three letters:

Always
Be
Closing

Regardless of your position withing your organization, if you and your employees are always closing (sales),  then you are already ahead of a large percentage of your competition.

This attitude is especially needed in micro and small businesses.  Sometimes their very survival is based on an ABC closing.

In what ways does your organization promote every employee to ABC (Always Be Closing)?

–J. Nolfo helps companies understand their customers though a variety of market research strategies.  He has over ten years of experience of market research for strategic planning purposes.  He is the Director of Research at Rhino Market Research.  He shares his thoughts about market research and business concepts with his blog “Pensare…Understanding Market Research in Business“.  If you would like to discuss this blog or how J. can help you understand your customers, email him at jnolfo@rhinomarketresearch.com.

Attitude Is A Business’s Lifeblood

Hyman's Seafood CompanyI recently took a trip to Charleston, SC and ate at the great restaurant Hyman’s Seafood near the market.  While eating there, I noticed these little cards with life tips and mottos.  I could not help but be impacted, personally and professionally, about one of the quotes on these cards. 

Fast forward about three weeks.  As I was getting ready to write this blog and thinking all morning about what to write about, I saw the magnet that I picked up from Hyman’s.  It is from Charles R. Swindoll, a writer and clergman.

“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company… a church… a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past… we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you… we are in charge of our Attitudes.” 

Business AttitudeAttitude is so important in how you live your life.  Having the ‘glass half empty or half full” affects the day-to-day decisions in your life.  As Charles Swindoll mentioned, it is more important than education or circumstance.  It will make a company successful or fail.  A positive attitude gets you the new client or sale. 

How are you instilling a positive mental attitude in your business and those that work around you? 

–J. Nolfo helps companies understand their customers though a variety of market research strategies.  He has over ten years of experience of market research for strategic planning purposes.  He is the Director of Research at Rhino Market Research.  He shares his thoughts about market research and business concepts with his blog “Pensare…Understanding Market Research in Business“.  If you would like to discuss this blog or how J. can help you understand your customers, email him at jnolfo@rhinomarketresearch.com.

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