This blog post is one in a series of eight articles that explore the most important characteristics of a strong leader. These articles are linked to a Prezi visual presentation, which you can view here.
Be a Student of Business
Well, that's assuming you're in business. If you're reading this leadership series and you're in some other field, be a student of whatever it is you do! To be a better leader, you must continue learning and investing in yourself.
But let's talk in terms of business, because that's what I know best. What does it mean to be a student of business? It means being interested in the broader world of business thought beyond your own company and beyond your industry. In the broad world of business, the general categories (or disciplines) include management, marketing, sales & distribution, human resources, operations (like warehousing, transportation, distribution, manufacturing), accounting, information technology, finance & planning. Within each of these disciplines every business must deploy training, process improvement, integration of new technologies, and performance measurement.
All these disciplines continuously evolve due to new customer demands, new technology, and competitive innovation. A true student of business never stops thinking about the way business can be improved.
What are some of the ways you can become a lifelong Student of Business?
1. Read read read. Fast Company, Inc. Magazine, Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Wired, and Entrepreneur are all fantastic publications devoted to bringing you the latest and greatest in business thinking and achievement.
2. Join a business development group, like TEC, Vistage, or YPO (Young President's Organization). Membership in one of these organizations will give you a network of other business leaders who are working to improve their skills and performance, and your group will consist of business leaders in many different industries.
3. Subscribe to this blog! Seriously. We give terrific information, and if you're a subscriber you won't ever miss out.
4. Take StrategyWerx classes. StrategyWerx (a business I own) is entirely focused on providing answers and services to small business owners. Our webinars, seminars, and videos will make a meaningful contribution to your business knowledge.
5. Hang out in the business book section at your nearest book store.Build your business book library!
Whatever you choose to do, know that finding a passion for and interest in ongoing business knowledge is sure to make you a better leader.
Watch for our next installment in this 8 part series, coming in the next day or two!