Ownership vs. Leadership: Leading for success?

leadership

 3 common leadership pitfalls of small business owners.

 

As a management consultant, I frequently talk to CEO’s and business leaders who own their own companies.

Many of these leaders feel the need to focus on financial ownership and their products at the expense of employee and customer leadership.   And many are surprised to learn that there is a direct connection between leadership and revenue growth.

There are many checklists of how to become a leader.  There are also lots of examples of business leaders like Oprah Winfrey or Sheryl Sandberg who have managed to combine business success with an enormous focus on mentoring and service.  Sometimes, it’s important to think about the non-leadership or opposite characteristics to illustrate the point.  Otherwise stated: If you don’t know what the problem is, you can’t fix it.  Here are three that come to mind:

1. Hubris and Leadership

We only need to look at the example of Lance Armstrong and the cycling association to know that “pride goeth before a fall.” [1>

That’s hubris in a nutshell.  Many owners of companies or people who achieve notable success in their field frequently fall victim to a case of extreme self-importance.  Recognizable symptoms of this within business organizations include a lack of willingness to discuss and learn from mistakes and a lack of honesty.

Both of these symptoms over time will create a high turnover rate of both customers and employees.  Look at any company or organization you know where there is a self-important leader at the helm and ask the question:  how many clients would recommend this company and how many employees have stayed there for more than 2 or 3 years?

James D. Robinson III, former chair and CEO of American Express and Founder of RRE Venture, has a Leadership One through Ten list.  Number 6 in the list says,  ” Integrity matters around the clock.  The same goes for humility.

Check arrogance in any job at the door! Beware the illusions of success” [2>

2. Greed and Leadership

Following right on the heels of hubris is greed.  This one is fairly easy to illustrate with numerous lessons of Wall Street and the finance industry.

One of the most sensational is the subject of a new Martin Scorsese film, The Wolf of Wall Street[3>.   If you have the stomach for it, go see this true story of greed at it’s worst.

Many leaders of companies focus on “what’s in it for me?” and on living the “high-life” and they mentor their employees to do the same by example.

This breeds an organization that is based on self-importance vs. collaboration.  It also breeds one that doesn’t develop generosity and acts of kindness.

Observe the messages of the new leader of the Roman Catholic Church, Pope Francis, winner of the 2013 Time Person of the Year.   The Time article reports that he (the Pope) “told a gathering of his diplomats that he wanted them to identify candidates for bishop in their home countries who are, he said, ‘gentle, patient and merciful, animated by inner poverty’and also by outward simplicity and austerity of life.” [4>

 

RELATED POSTS

Go From Mundane to Marvelous: Cultivating Joy in Your Job

Go From Mundane to Marvelous: Cultivating Joy in Your Job

Everyone is realizing that doing something they love for a living is becoming a necessity for their soul. When I graduated from high school, I wanted to become a psychologist, but I had to put my dream on hold and start working full-time to pay for college. I applied...

Looking for a Good Business Leader? Then Listen!

Looking for a Good Business Leader? Then Listen!

Ask these three insight-gathering questions to help you identify leaders. What makes a good leader? There are many traits that contribute to being a good leader, because there are many different types of leaders for different types of circumstances. Three traits that...

7 Steps to Improving Safety and Productivity in Your Workplace

7 Steps to Improving Safety and Productivity in Your Workplace

Gain an advantage by adding psychological safety to your workplace playbook Long before the pandemic was playing havoc with people’s concerns about safety in the workplace, employers knew the importance of having workplace health and safety issues on their radar....

Video Gallery

Polls

Sign Up for the Latin Biz Today Newsletter

PR Newswire

Featured Authors

Innovation & Strategy

Money

Talent/HR

Legal

Marketing

Mi Mamá Es Una Brava

Mi Mamá Es Una Brava

She was fierce, unapologetic, unselfish and brava. Editor's note: This is a reprise piece from Gaby Alcantara Diaz remembering her late parents and brother.   Over 21.2 million (all) immigrant women reside in the United States since 2013 with many traveling by foot,...

Culture

Mi Mamá Es Una Brava

Mi Mamá Es Una Brava

She was fierce, unapologetic, unselfish and brava. Editor's note: This is a reprise piece from Gaby Alcantara Diaz remembering her late parents and brother.   Over 21.2 million (all) immigrant women reside in the United States since 2013 with many traveling by foot,...

Fashion

Food

Music

Sports

Chiefs Repeat, Closer to (but Not yet), a Dynasty [Video]

Chiefs Repeat, Closer to (but Not yet), a Dynasty [Video]

A 360 recap of Super Bowl LVIII Latin Biz Today advisory board member & Sports lead and two of his sports management students weigh in on Super Bowl LVIII The Aftermath  It’s hard to put into words why anybody would be shooting at a Super Bowl parade and killing...

Work & Life

Mindfulness

Health & Fitness

Travel & Destinations

Personal Blogs

Pin It on Pinterest