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The best snippets of advice from business leaders

Many business owners consider themselves to be leaders, but do they truly have the qualities and ambition that drives leadership?

Poor leadership within a business can be detrimental; the mark of a true leader lies within the success of a project or business as a whole.

In fact, a leader doesn’t even have to be a business owner or manager. Anybody that possesses the right skills, knowledge, and demeanor can be considered one. So, what are the key features of effective leadership?

We’ve taken a look at the advice given by some of the most well-known business leaders, and what brought them to where they are today.

Look for gaps in the market

Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.

– Harold R. McAlindon, Author

Creating a niche product or service offering that is needed within your industry can have tremendous benefits. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel to be innovative; look for areas where there are customer needs that are not being met by your competitors.

Listen to customer feedback

Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.

– Bill Gates, Founder of Microsoft

Seeking and listening to customer feedback is vital to understanding how your business can improve. No business is perfect, therefore great leaders will need to take on board criticism (and indeed praise), to inform and adapt future services. Take a look at our blog for top tips on utilising customer feedback within your business.

Keep abreast of industry updates

It is not the strongest species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the most responsive to change.
– Charles Darwin, Evolutionary Scientist

The ever-changing nature of technology, techniques, culture, and politics, means that businesses must keep up to date with changes impacting their industry and implement them into their current business model. By trailblazing viable new techniques, you open new opportunities for your business to stand out within your industry.

Invest in your team

The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things, he is the one that gets the people to do the greatest things.
– Ronald Reagan, 40th US President

A great leader will never be insular. They will look for opportunities across their entire team and invest in their strengths. Whether this comes from additional training for your staff members, rewards, social events or regular performance reviews, when looking for success, your team is the key component.

Never stop learning

As an entrepreneur, if you’re the originator, you need to be faster than ever. – Niklas Zennstrom, Co-Founder of Skype

If you aren’t keeping your own skills, knowledge, and expertise up to date, you can’t expect your business to be at the top of its game. Whilst it is crucial that you train your team, it is just as important for you to also ensure you are continually learning and growing.

Marketing is key

Next to doing the right thing, the most important thing is to let people know you are doing the right thing.

– John D. Rockefeller, Founder of Standard Oil

Whilst a boastful attitude will not get you far in the business world, neither will modesty. If you are providing a great product or service to your customers, shout about it. Carrying out marketing activity will play a vital role in getting your business seen for all the right reasons.

Ultimately great advice means great leadership, resulting in business success. What has been the best piece of advice a business leader has ever given you? What advice would you give to fellow leaders? Share your business leadership knowledge with us on Twitter.

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