When you were a kid, did you ever play the game, "Follow The Leader"?
In this game, the leader would do something and then you would have to mimic them, or do it too. I remember we used to play this all around the school playground.
Although you may not realize it, as adults, and especially as entrepreneurs, we are still playing this game. If you are an entrepreneur, which leaders in your field do you follow? Which ones do you mimic? Which actions of theirs do you do too?
Mimicking other leaders in your industry is a great way to learn and can help you to grow. However, when do you STOP following and START leading? When do you declare that you are the leader?
Think back to playing "follow the leader" as a kid. Did the other kids all point at you and say, "Okay, Sally! You're it. You're our leader now." No. No that is probably NOT what happened. Instead, you or someone else in the group became bored following the leader and just suddenly shouted out, "I'm the leader, now!" BOOM! The switch was made.
Are you ready to call yourself a leader?
Check out these 10 reasons it's time to call yourself a leader and declare it with confidence the next time you take action!
It is Time to Be a Leader Because it is Time to Embrace…
1. Your Business Plan
Don't blindly follow another leader's business plan. Why? Because you have your own time frame, budget, idea of success, beliefs, strengths and weaknesses. You need a plan that will allow YOU to succeed based on your criteria.
2. Your Vision
You have your own dreams and passions. In order for you business to succeed you need to step into your power and lead people from your place of passion. Otherwise, you could get 3 years into this and realize you've been busting your butt for someone else's dream! Ek!
3. Your Community
Your clients, customers, fans and followers will look different from that of your competition. And if they don't, you may want to start asking yourself why? Are your social media posts authentic to you, or do they sound like your competition? What type of people do you want to be attracting?
4. Your Personality
Thought leaders become leaders because others are attracted to the way they hold themselves, what they do and what they say. If you are always mimicking someone else then followers won't know who YOU truly are or what you really do.
Think about the people you know. Why are you inspired by some and not others? Are their pieces of your personality that you could let shine more?
5. Your Success
When you're following another leader, you can often trap yourself THEIR goals, instead of your own. Their goal might be to have a million dollar year. But, if you haven't had your first $1000 month, then how can you expect to have a million dollar year?
Treating other people's goals as your own is setting yourself up for failure. It also causes you to downplay your own REAL successes! Don't miss out on your own achievements because you were too busy looking at the neighbors yard.
6. Your True Competition
Don't confuse your true competitors with your thought leaders. The thought leaders that you follow are people who inspire you. You are their client. They envision someone like you when they create new products or host events.
Therefore, you need to turn around and look at the other clients of the thought leader. Those other clients are your true competition. Not the thought leader herself or himself. Start developing JV partnerships with them. Together, you will help each other up.
7. Your Future
Successful entrepreneur's plan a year in advance. Do you have year long goals? Have you mapped those goals out with check points along the way?
If you are looking at what your competition is doing now and trying to "jump in", you are actually 12 months too late. Plan your success strategy months in advance and stick to your plan. Don't get distracted by the shinny penny's other people hold up.
8. Your Consistent Marketing Message
Along the same lines as #6, you need to plan your marketing message and strategy in advance. Do NOT get stuck in the vortex of "random acts of marketing". This happens when entrepreneurs do not have a plan and the tools in place to market consistently.
We've all probably been there, or at least, you've seen it… An entrepreneur will fall silent on the social media front for weeks and then all of a sudden there will be a flood of posts from him or her.
Plan your marketing in advance and keep it consistent. Set yourself up with the tools you need to do this right.
9. Your Failures
You need to make your own mistakes. You need to track your own results and see what works with your clients and customers. Find out what social media marketing platform most resonates with YOUR ideal client. What blogs do they find most helpful?
Only when you start focusing on your own results can you learn from your failures and turn them into successes.
Stop "learning" from others mistakes and get MESSY!!
10. Your Journey
"Happiness is a journey, not a destination." When you focus too much on following others, then your focus becomes the end result, the destination. But, when YOU become the leader, then your focus is on the present moment..what are you doing right now. How can you enjoy the journey today?
Think back to when you played follow the leader. When you took control and lead, suddenly your focus shifted. You had to think about what you were doing and where you wanted to take the group.
Enjoy your journey! Your time is now!
How are you stepping up to be a leader in your business?
Comment and share below!
It could be either depending on the circumstances.
My favorite takeaway from this blog: " Do NOT get stuck in the vortex of "random acts of marketing". This happens when entrepreneurs do not have a plan and the tools in place to market consistently." As usual, great information Kim!
I’m still working on this issue.
My husband and I will be going on our yearly getaway weekend where we talk about what we like to see happen the next year; it really works. I guess I need to be doing this also for my business. You gave some great pointers Kim; thanks!
Glad you got some great pointers, Olga!
As usual, you knock it out of the park … in this case reminding people that all of their experience and ideas makes them capable of being a leader. Sometimes it seems easier to follow.
Awwhhh, thanks Pamela!
I love #6 & #9! I came from an industry where it was all about competition. Now as an entrepreneur I'm really trying to embrace the concept of "collaboration" instead of competition. So thank you for these reminders!
I love this post – thanks Kim. This was great timing for me – thanks!
Kerry, so proud of you! Starting off on your own is going to be an amazing journey for you!
Random marketing and having no plan are one of the major challenges I have in my business. It's definitely a journey and I am learning a lot along the way. Thanks Kim.
You are definitely progressing Michael and that’s the important part!
Thanks for dropping in Denny!
What a great set of steps to really focus one on their individual approach to life. I'm going to take them one by one and see if what I'm doing is true to myself and start being a leader in my own life. Thank you!
Love hearing this Julie!
Awesome! So glad that I have been able to make a difference Bryan!
Each individual can become a leader bringing themselves to the table. Thanks for sharing this wonderful reminder Kim!
As always, a very useful and empowering post. Each of us has a leader within us. It's just a matter of thinking like one, but more importantly, embracing it!
Great article! What really hit home was the random acts of social media posts. Even I make this mistake sometimes. (Mental Note to self to plan better!)
Roxanne, so glad you got a golden gem out of this one 😉