16 Practical Tips On How To Be A Successful Business Leader

Updated 27 August 2023

The success of a business depends on having effective leadership. Outstanding leaders can organise and inspire their team members while setting and achieving organisational goals. Learning the qualities and traits of an effective leader can help you advance in an organisational hierarchy. In this article, we define a business leader, discuss the importance of an effective leader and look at 16 practical tips for being a successful leader.

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What Is A Business Leader?

A business leader inspires a group of employees to achieve a company-wide objective. This can be an individual in a key position, such as a corporation's vice president, chief executive officer (CEO) or newspaper editor-in-chief. They can also be a subordinate, such as a team leader or a sales associate. You can easily advance to a leadership role with the necessary leadership abilities, regardless of the position within an organisation. People with strong leadership skills in the corporate environment frequently advance to executive roles such as a CEO, chief operating officer, chief financial officer, president or chairperson.

Related: Leadership Roles (With Examples And Functions Of Leadership)

Importance Of Good Leadership

Good business leadership helps employees achieve shared organisational goals. The benefits of having an effective leader can include:

  • Increased sales

  • Brand recognition

  • Business expansion

  • High-quality work

  • New product development

  • Positive employee attitude

  • Increased productivity

  • Employee retention

Prominent leaders in business have the communication, social, decision-making and analytical skills to plan strategies for success.

16 Tips On How To Be A Successful Business Leader

Though many leadership philosophies and techniques are available to corporate executives, some qualities can help in team management and motivation. Here are 16 practical tips to be successful in such roles:

1. Improve your leadership style

Prominent leaders often combine various leadership elements, such as creativity, encouragement, insight and appreciation. The most successful leaders can adapt to the requirements of different situations, utilising their diverse leadership skills to accomplish their goals. Various leadership styles yield different results and suit different personalities. Understanding what type of leader you are can help you identify your strengths, areas of improvement and the type of communication that may make you a better leader and inspire your team.

2. Learn as you progress

Having all the knowledge before executing a task or project may not be possible. Make yourself comfortable with exploring and finding the optimal solution as you progress. By incorporating personal affirmations, upholding an optimistic outlook and researching the industry you work in, you may overcome self-doubt and feel ready for any new assignment.

3. Develop a simple mission statement

Vision is necessary for business leadership. Maintain your attention to something that may push you forward. In your mission statement, you can summarise the organisation's essential values, which act as the guiding principles for company culture, shared objectives for product development and the general work environment. No matter what kind of business you aim to establish, it is imperative to align yourself and your team with the motivation.

Related: Values, Mission And Vision Statements: Definition And Aim

4. Make thoughtful decisions

Successful leaders are confident decision-makers. They decide quickly while considering how their choices affect the company and its employees. Thoughtful decisions benefit the company and increase your team's trust in your ability to lead. When making decisions that impact the organisation, it is helpful to complete the following tasks:

  • Know your goal.

  • Collect knowledge about all your options.

  • Consider the impact of each option.

  • Trust your instincts and make a confident decision.

  • Evaluate your choices.

5. Develop networking skills

Networking can be challenging, especially if you are naturally an introvert or in a new role or organisation. Effective communication is essential for career growth and achieving success as a leader. It helps you better understand the business world outside your workplace and helps the outside world know more about you. While networking, it is easy to focus on discussing yourself, but consider that you may also want the people you meet to remember you positively. Being curious and genuine in your responses about them can help you become more memorable.

Related: 9 Effective Business Networking Tips For Young Professionals

6. Utilise books or podcasts about leadership

You can better understand how to improve your leadership abilities through self-study. Look for books on leadership or the life of prominent leaders in bookstores or libraries. Many podcasts and video workshops are also available online for free.

7. Study the leadership styles you admire

When you see leaders you admire, whether at your job or in your community, note the specific qualities they have that make them prominent leaders. Focus on ways to develop those qualities and apply them in your work. Setting specific goals for developing one skill at a time is helpful.

8. Find a mentor

A great way to learn is by studying under those you admire most. Ask a leader you respect to mentor you on a weekly or monthly basis. They may help you set goals towards becoming a better leader by developing and applying your skills.

Related: What Is A Mentor And How To Find the Right One For You

9. Stay aware

Recognise and understand your advantages and areas for improvement. Use your strengths to help the business and look for opportunities to develop the abilities that still require improvement. Delegate work to employees who can complete it quickly and easily. Acknowledge what you can improve and describe the challenges you have faced. These actions can help develop a reliable team and positive workplace culture.

10. Be fair

Treat each team member fairly and always adhere to the same standards and guidelines. Here are a few things to do to show fairness in a workplace:

  • Listening to both sides of the issue

  • Respecting people's perspective

  • Being genuine

  • Adhering to your own rules

  • Treating people as you would like them to treat you

  • Appreciating all team members equally

The team appreciates and trusts you more if you act fairly and subjectively. Considering multiple points of view can help you make smarter decisions and grow as a leader.

11. Continue learning

Successful business leaders never stop learning. Monitor the market and your sector to see trends and discover new techniques to develop and improve. To maintain the business competitive and relevant, attend conferences and seminars, take classes and look into continuing education options. Encourage curiosity and openness among your team to learn new concepts and gain new abilities.

Related: Vital Skills And Traits For Professional Growth (With Types)

12. Use your imagination

Be creative so you can think of new and exciting ideas that can help the organisation succeed. Rather than doing tasks the way the company has always done, consider whether you can make innovative changes that contribute to the organisation's advancement. Encourage creativity on the team, such as developing challenges for team activities that require creative problem-solving skills and unconventional thinking.

Related: Creating Thinking: Definition, Development And Advantages

13. Work with your team

Collaborating with your team rather than leading from above may demonstrate your dedication to the company and its success. You may occasionally perform duties outside your role, such as taking calls, handling customer service inquiries, generating documents or creating products. You can better understand your team's activities, processes and areas for improvement by performing the same tasks.

Related: What Is The Importance Of Leadership In The Workplace?

14. Help your team succeed

Encourage employees to commit fully, but remember that nobody is perfect. Instead of just focusing on their flaws, assist employees in developing their abilities. Help someone learn from a mistake if they make one. Prominent leaders recognise that growth takes time and may require effective mentoring while still wanting what is good for their people.

Related: How To Demonstrate Leadership Skills At Work: A Guide

15. Respect an individual's time

Identify the most effective means of interaction, information sharing and task completion. Plan brief meetings with a purpose and a plan of action. Choose the ideal method of communication for your team, whether through email, messaging apps or virtual or in-person meetings. Find out what working habits make your staff the most effective and productive and consider that choice. This can involve allowing people to set their hours, work alone or collaborate. By demonstrating to your colleagues that you value their time, you can work together to achieve objectives and finish projects on time or earlier.

16. Communicate clearly

Communicate honestly and openly with each team member, especially if they work from different offices or locations. Establish precise objectives and deadlines at the outset of a project. Encourage your staff to share knowledge and ask questions. Spend time speaking with each employee individually so you can provide them with personalised feedback. Getting the key information may require deciding and leading effectively, asking questions and considering your team's requirements. To better comprehend your team's opinions, concerns and ideas, engage in active listening. Be sympathetic and demonstrate your concern to other employees.

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