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We need leaders, who add value to the people and the organization they lead; who work for the benefit of others and not just for their own personal gain. Leaders who inspire and motivate, not intimidate and manipulate; who live with people to know their problems in order to solve them and who follow a moral compass that points in the right directions regardless of the trends.” – Mary Kay Ash

If you ask a hundred people the definition of a leader, you will get a hundred different answers. The answer varies depending on the experience each of us have in our workplace. You can define a leader as a person who can foresee the future, as someone who can face any challenge and bring about a collective product from his team, and who is transparent and displays psychological maturity at the need of the hour. When you take upon the challenge of running a small business, you want to make a living out of it, make profit and at the same time, earn an identity in your local community. Here we look at 10 traits a person should exhibit to become a business leader.

  1. Visionary and have domain knowledge – A true business leader is a person who understands their business focus and is willing to accept and change their business tactics by adapting to the latest business tools. This will help them propel their business forward.
  1. Should be communicative and assertive – The core motive of any business is to make a profit. Mixed opportunities inherently come with any business. There are times when profits are high, in some cases the profit is marginal while some transactions have nil profit. A good business leader will not measure profit and loss in terms of monetary gains but will know that business is all about dealing with the various people from different walks of life. For an ideal leader, good business relationships are weighed as profit. To strike and maintain a good relationship, one must be communicative and assertive with their co-workers, support staff, vendors and clients at all times.
  1. Never mask the truth – A business leader should be ready to accept his strengths and weaknesses. He should show courage to speak about his failures as much as he speaks about his successes.
  1. Display of honesty towards support staff and clients – This will improve the brand image and add long-term value to your business. As people realize that you’re a small business owner and that you’re truly genuine, then your personal image will increase among your community and colleagues.
  1. A business leader should be passionate about his business – When a person is passionate about his work it reflects in the business growth. As it increases, so does the productivity of his staff. The passion and devotion should be displayed at all levels of business and its transactions.
  1. Be humane – It is a fact that money is like blood to business and profit is the motive. But the lifeline and spine of any business is the people who are employed by the organization. Therefore, when a need or a situation arises a good business leader should not ignore the demands of his support system. Though it may not have an immediate effect on your business, it is sure to dent the brand image.
  1. Good sense of humor and judgment – Though it is not mandatory that a good business leader should have a good sense of humor, he should have good judgment. A leader who has the ability to laugh at his mistakes and at the same time find means to take corrective measures are liked by his employees, stakeholders and colleagues. They should also be able to judge the current situation and make appropriate decisions.
  1. Should be emotionally strong – Even in challenging situation, a leader should display good conduct and behavior through their thoughts and actions. Be composed and not aggressive, or else you’ll be distanced from his employees and stakeholders.
  1. Business-wise – It’s imperative to have a business strategy and tactic in place to bring in profit. Be wise enough to grab the opportunities through wise decision-making skills. Remember, profit is the motive of all businesses.
  1. Last but not the least, be socially conscious – As a small business owner, you should realize that your business is flourishing not because you are a visionary doing the right things at the right time but the business is profiting because the society has accepted your business. Therefore, a good business leader would always want to give back to society for its support.

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