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8 Traits of an Effective Business Leader

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If you’d like to learn how to be an effective leader so you can influence and inspire others, sign up for the free 90-Day Master Class hosted by the founder of Addicted2Success.com, Joel Brown.


If you’re leading a business, there’s no question about whether you’re a leader or not. You are a leader. The only question is what kind of leader are you? Some people think that inspirational leaders just happen—they’re a product of personality, circumstance, and talent. While some may take to leadership more easily than others, anyone can develop themselves into an inspirational leader through intentional and thoughtful work on themselves.

Your business’s success or failure relies upon you as its leader, so it is well worth doing this work. Cultivate the eight traits below so you can be an most effective leader:

1. Inspires Others

More than anything else, an effective leader must inspire others. A leader is only as good as their followers. In order to inspire others, you need a strong vision. When you have a vision you genuinely believe in, your enthusiasm will be infectious, and others will come along with you.

You must also extend love and care to your followers. People will go to the end of the earth for you if they know you care about them. 

2. Emotional Intelligence

Leaders need emotional intelligence, both internal and external. Internal emotional intelligence means you have inner awareness and self-control. If you’re triggered by a circumstance that brings up pain from the past, you’re able to identify what you’re triggered and practice self-control to keep yourself objective and calm.

External emotional intelligence means you have a sense of how to relate well interpersonally. You can practice appropriate behavior in your relationships and build others up. With internal and external emotional intelligence, leaders can not only can identify other people’s feelings, but they can identify their own feelings. 

3. Trust

Trust is huge. When businesses operate in an atmosphere of trust, communication is smoother, more productive, and more efficient. Mistakes are communicated and resolved quickly. There’s more collaboration and less fighting; as a result, business goes faster and operations are cheaper.

Low trust, on the other hand, correlates to tasks taking much longer, costing more money, and  making more mistakes. As a leader, you must work to build an atmosphere of trust by behaving in a consistent, fair manner, such that workers understand the expectations and have room to learn from mistakes. 

“The pessimist complains about the wind. The optimist expects it to change. The leader adjusts the sails.” – John Maxwell

4. Perseverance

Perseverance is a willingness to set your mind with the determination that you will accomplish what you set out to do, and you’ll do it with a positive attitude. Perseverance is the strength of character to push through when you would rather just close the door, cash it out, and go get a drink. 

Running a business is hard. You’re going to hit obstacles on a regular basis; challenges will come in all shapes and sizes. If you’re going to survive and thrive, you’re going to need to persevere. Successful business leaders push through the hard times. 

5. Decisiveness

A lack of decisiveness can cause many leaders to stumble; in fact, it’s one of the most common complaints we hear from employees during our consultations. These leaders might be afraid to make the wrong decision, so they refuse to make one, delay the decision, or conclude they simply can’t decide what to do on a given issue. This can be incredibly frustrating for employees and makes your business vulnerable.

We’re not advocating for rash decision-making, because that’s dangerous too. Strong leaders should take sufficient time to weigh evidence and arguments about what to do—then move forward with decisive action. 

6. Collaboration

A well-known proverb says, “Go fast, go alone. Go together, go far.” Empirical evidence supports the wisdom of this proverb, proving that teams go farther in business. Yet many business leaders would prefer to not deal with employees at all. Employees cost money, and they can be hard to manage. 

When you go it alone, you’re able to pivot fast, make changes, and have control over everything. Still, at some point, you may decide you want to go far, and you will then need to bring other people on board.

“The function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers.” – Ralph Nader

7. Good Communication

Your communication style has the power to motivate or manipulate your employees, to establish trust or dismantle it. When you communicate, are you harsh? Are you a people pleaser? Do you yell? Do you shame and humiliate? That’s poor and reactive communication.

A strong leader communicates truthfully, in a way that honors others’ dignity. They address honestly what needs to get done and how to get there. Their communication is delivered clearly, appropriately, and in a healthy way—in other words, the communication doesn’t come in the midst of an emotional reaction.

8. Empowering and Protecting

To be a strong leader, you must empower and protect your employees. That sense of security helps your employees give you their very best work. You empower people by giving them everything they need to be successful—all the necessary resources, training, and clarity they need to do their best work. 

You protect your employees by identifying the rules and boundaries of how work is done. You clarify, “This is the way we play the game: these are the rules of how we behave.” In knowing the rules, employees can better decide what and what not to do.

Have you ever had a great boss or leader? Share with us below why they were so great!

Kathryn Redman and Michael Redman are the husband-and-wife team behind Half a Bubble Out (HaBO), a marketing and business consulting firm, and the founders of HaBO Village, a membership website which helps leaders build Passion & Provision companies, full of profit, purpose, and legacy. They are also the authors of the book Fulfilled which you can get by clicking the link.

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10 Tips to Deal With Negativity While Starting a Business

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There are ups and downs in business but fearing failures can stop you from taking your first step towards excellence. With pandemic on tow, aspiring entrepreneurs feel a little stuck when ideating a business prospect. Here, we give you some actionable tips to deal with negativity while starting a business, even during situations like a pandemic. We also took the liberty to throw in some amazing book recommendations that’ll help you enjoy the process of being positive and achieving your business goals.

10 Tips to deal with negativity while starting a business in a pandemic

1. Get a mentor

The first thing to do as a new business owner is to find the right kind of mentor. That person could be someone in your industry or in general who you look up to. The guidance must be apt for your business, and it should be a mutual responsibility of sharing knowledge. 

2. Two big R’s – Routine and Refresh

Made a mess of something? Try to reboot the situation and make it work. Take a break once in a while and refresh yourself if you feel stuck or your ideas feel mundane. Plan a routine and stick to them – both personal and professional. Having a routine can increase productivity and engage in more activities apart from your pre-planned schedule. 

3. Inculcate problem-solving mentality

Do not panic once you are thrown a problem. Arrange a meeting with the respective party, listen to both sides of the stories, and make a decision that is more realistic and feasible. 

4. Hire half and half

Whenever you hire someone for your business. Make sure that half of the people contradict your ideas, and the other half have the same mindset as yours. The people who contradict can bring in more valuable points and their perspective might take the discussion to a whole new level.  Don’t take too much time finding the perfect one. Hire an apt person who can have the right attitude. 

5. Network, Network, and Network

Find like-minded people and mingle with them. Be more sportive in the learning process. Listen more and talk less – if you are a beginner. You can only be a constructive person who gives input to someone if you have listened to everyone’s point of view. If you feel down, your network might have something to uplift your mood and change your perspective on something. 

“Negativity, in general, is one of the things that holds people back, and you have to see what’s holding you back to get away from it.” – Lucy Dacus

6. Tech-savvy personnel

Learn a thing or two about the latest technology that you implement in your organization. Since the world revolves around technology, make sure your administrative authority knows as well.  

7. Don’t schedule a meeting, that could have been an email

Yes! I said it. Having unnecessary meetings will weaken the purpose of having a constructive discussion. Having back-to-back meetings drains the team members and yourself too. Always have a 10 to 15 minutes break between each meeting to feel refreshed and give your 100%. 

8. Have a pros and cons list

Always, I mean always have a pros and cons list. Let’s say one of your team members pitch an idea to improve the marketing strategies starting next month. Jot down the pros and cons before approving or rejecting it point-blank. It’s a systematic way of making a decision. 

9. Track your finances

Even if you have a team of accountants and auditors, make sure that you are present (both mentally and physically) – learn if you are not aware of it. Trusting your employees is a must, but not overseeing the records is a mistake that should be avoided. 

10. Remember your “why?”

At some point in your hectic schedule or not having ME time can get to you. During those tough times – ask yourself – “Why am I doing this?”. If you can answer this question with a valid explanation, you’ll feel energized. Because “A purpose drives you”. 

5 Best books to read to be more positive as an entrepreneur

Reading always puts me into perspective. Therefore, I took some liberty to give a sample of positivity and determination through words. 

These are the 5 books that’ll guide you to be a more positive and successful entrepreneur. 

  1. Attitude is everything by Jeff Keller – The decisions you make, the routine you set for yourself, and the affirmations you say to yourself every day are going to make a huge difference. If you feel tired, hopeless, and quitting – then this book is for you to boost you up!
  2. Mindset: The new psychology of success by Carol Dweck – You do what you think. In this book, the author talks about two mindsets: The growth mindset and the fixed mindset and what they’ll do to you respectively. She helps you recognize your mindset and change it for the better. 
  3. Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton Christensen – This book is about technology uprisings all over the world and businesses that adopted and implemented technology in their firm. The author teaches you that just because your competitors and others are adopting something into their businesses doesn’t mean that you have to as well. Make an informed decision. 
  4. As A Man Thinketh by James Allen – This book specifically is about the power of thought and how it shapes your life into a more meaningful and fulfilling one.
  5. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle – The author talks about how people always keep thinking about what the future holds but then forget to live and enjoy the present. And also helps us understand how to make decisions more efficiently based on the present. 

Working towards inner balance requires consistency and perseverance. So does hard and smart work. Being negative is a part of our lives. It’s important to channel it appropriately and make things happen despite the roller coaster ride that is our lives. Hope you overcome your fears and negativity to shine bigger and brighter. Cheers! 

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Defining Your Own Success: A Step by Step Guide

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Everyone wants success in their lives, but success can be defined in so many different ways that it can sometimes seem daunting. In this blog post, you will learn how to make success easier for yourself by defining what success means to you. (more…)

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5 Characteristics of Athletes You Need for Business Success

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Michigan State basketball coach, Tom Izzo, wrote “Players play. Tough players win.” I would add to that, “It’s tough to win.”I think if you, as a leader, are looking to build an organization that is successful – that wins – you first have to accept that it will be tough. There are no shortcuts to success. In my 44 years of coaching, I was fortunate to coach a lot of tough players. I believe the toughness I have seen in athletes corresponds well to any organization or business. (more…)

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5 Changes in Your Habits That Will Help You Thrive

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We’ve all found ourselves at the bottom at least once in our lives. We thought that everything’s ruined and there’s no going back. The truth is – there’s always going back. Moreover, it takes one to fall many times and feel like everything’s ruined to succeed in life. (more…)

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