Wed, Jul 03, 2013
While mentoring entrepreneurs I find myself often in a situation where the discussion ventures from a set of specific “mechanical” problems and challenges to the soft skills of leadership. Sadly we (collectively) don’t seem to invest nearly as much as we should into the development of our leadership skills than we do into the “hard” skills such as engineering, etc. (when was the last time you saw a Code Academy-style online program teaching leadership skills — and more importantly: When was the last time you actually studied this stuff?). And yet — those skills often make or break a venture.
When I started out as an entrepreneur, straight out of college, believing that I have all the answers, I failed miserably. I simply had no clue how to manage people and relationships, how to effectively lead, what my leadership strength and weaknesses are and how to best bring them forward. With hindsight I know that a good chunk of our struggles can be pinpointed to my lack of skill in this area.
I highly encourage you to build up your own and your teams leadership strength. There are a gazillion books and resources available to you — there is something for every style and flavor. A good starting point is The Strength Finder test which will give you an inside into your own strengths and how they can help you as a leader.
Venture out a bit, explore the literature and let me know if there is anything in particular you would like to see discussed in the Heretic on this subject.