Leaders and entrepreneurs have common traits of which go side by side. You can't have one without the other. To be an entrepreneur is to be a leader of your own destiny.
I am an avid crossfitter and I am a leadership development coach. As of two weeks ago these were two separate aspects of my personality that did not cross over, until…
…I arrived at my crossfit gym one morning to see a “Goals & Gainz” list on the board outlining 10 traits that required zero talent, all of which are proven leadership traits.
It’s common for new and established leaders and entrepreneurs to have moments of self-doubt and engage in social and professional comparisons. We live in a time when geniuses abound, but we have to remind ourselves that success often comes down to perseverance, not genius. It’s about consistency and follow through. That’s where the genius lies.
The skills to succeed aren’t God-given; they aren’t based on IQ or circumstance. They are skills anyone can acquire with practice. If you want to rise to the stature of Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg then research their professional success and emulate them if need be.
Aspiring leaders and entrepreneurs can easily emulate the greats to develop their own leadership style that will push them to the top.
1. Being on Time – You can be as good at arriving on time as Richard Branson. This is a character trait that is so easy to accomplish and promotes respect for all parties involved including yourself. Chronic lateness does exactly the opposite.
2. Work Ethic – You can have the same work ethic as Elon Musk. In fact most business icons have written books about their work ethic. Pick one up and research their routines. You will need to believe in the virtue of hard work. Even an early windfall or premature success will not sustain without the backbone of hard work to keep it going.
3. Effort – You can exert just as much effort as Bill Gates. The key is to be willing, and also to exert the right kind of effort so you don’t waste your time. Effort separates most successful leaders from the rest of the pack. They do not stop and they work at their goals like there are 1,000 rumpelstiltskins trying to beat them at their own game.
4. Body Language – You can convey the same body language as Sheryl Sandberg. Study the greats and see how they communicate nonverbally. Get a coach if need be to see where you might need work on your communication. Nonverbal cues may not be the secret to propel you to the top but they can definitely hinder you from getting there. Some traditions take body language very seriously.
5. Energy – You can harness the same energy as Oprah. While some of us might be born with a natural zest, it’s easily attainable and just takes the right medicine: sleep, proper diet, meditation, exercise, and some fun. It’s not rocket science; it’s the natural consequence of living healthy.
6. Attitude – You can have the same attitude as Franklin Roosevelt. It may have to be cultivated if you don’t have the leadership attitude to begin with, but you can get it if you want it. You can learn from a mentor and by emulating the greats. The more you emulate the more it becomes who you are.