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Leadership in a Startup | Ryan Bisanz


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7 out of 10 startups end up failing after three years. What keeps them in business for longer? Powerful leadership. Leaders and entrepreneurs who have guts and are willing to take risk are the most important link to a successful startup. In this slideshow you can see why that is the case.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Leadership in a Startup | Ryan Bisanz

  2. 2. Being a good leader is a tough task. You have to have grit and determination and you have to know how to get the best out of people. In a recent Forbes article entitled Startup Staffing: 10 Things A Good Leader Can Do To Keep Their Employees Motivated, Edmund Ingham talks about the things that leaders need to do to bring out the absolute best in their employees.
  3. 3. Ingham mentions that he has met with hundreds of entrepreneurs young and old and he’s found that their really is no personality type to describe them on the whole. 7 out of 10 startups don’t see over three years of business, and knowing this Ingham understands that predicting whether an idea turned startup remains successful for many years is not an exact science.
  4. 4. With the product being the wild card in every scenario, Ingham found that the biggest indicator of a successful startup is their leadership. Entrepreneurs who remain successful do so by employing the right people and motivating them to “bust a gut” for their business.
  5. 5. So while Ingham has established 10 things that he believes will make a great leader, here are just a few highlights from the article. If you want to read the article in full click here.
  6. 6. Be On Top Being the authority of your business is what makes you that founder. People are looking to you to have the highest level of knowledge about your business and they are expecting that you know it. Being the founder you should also have better contacts, better resources and the experience.
  7. 7. Show No Fear Even though it is a cliche, you have to be the fearless leader. There is a reason for it. Firstly, the business will never get off the ground if you aren’t willing to take some risk. As Ingham puts it, very little gets accomplished in team meetings. Decisions are made by leaders. Secondly, you have to have guts. In general, people respond to those who have guts. Leaders who put themselves on the front lines gain respect in a higher magnitude from their employees.
  8. 8. Be Seen People in the office will likely want you to be engaging. Introducing yourself and explaining the project on day one isn’t enough. Successful leaders don’t disappear to their employees. They are actively in the discussions from the conference room to the water cooler to the lounge. Ingham mentioned that he met an entrepreneur who put his office directly in the middle of his business and it had glass walls. His employees responded and it worked great.
  9. 9. Goals and Culture They both have to be firm and consistent. Flip-flopping or wavering much from the plan is what kills startups. As a leader you have to be confident in your decisions and understand that while it is OK to divert from the path a little bit it should never be made a habit and every diversion should always be done in the best interest of the company.
  10. 10. Make it Fun If you’re the leader of a startup it’s likely the people you are bringing on aren’t going to be rich immediately upon their hire. Startups are young and exciting and they should be treated that way. Keeping your employees entertained goes a long way. Always hammering away your mission, good leaders understand that keeping it light, enjoyable, and engaging is what allows employees to do their best. Plus, a fun workplace really gets employees behind you.