I knew I wanted to be my own boss very early on in my career. Because I was so young, just three years out of college, I had a lot of learning to do along the way. My partner and I started a cigar of the month club and after many long days and nights, success soon followed. We were thrilled…until the “of the month clubs” started to become less and less popular and eventually obsolete.

Bill Rancic

At that point, we had to be agile, so we quickly changed our business model and started supplying cigars to restaurants, golf courses, and casinos. Embracing change is an important skill that I still implement on a regular basis.

Because we were able to “pause and pivot” the business grew and we were eventually able to sell it. That is where leadership comes into the picture. Being a strong leader, who is willing to make big decisions is essential to a successful business.

Here is how to go about being a strong leader:

  1. Be creative and try to forge a new path. If something isn’t working, try to come up with your own innovative solution.
  2. Embrace the “never make excuses” mindset; meaning don’t give into the temptation to blame unexpected outcomes on external reasons, take responsibility for your role and take actions to ensure your desired results.
  3. Value people, their power and their potential. You hired these people for a reason; now take advantage of their potential and give them an opportunity to prove themselves.

Once you have those tools in place the next step is to take action:

  1. Use practical execution- learn how to show and not just tell. Show your employees you want to enable them to do their best
    work by offering professional development opportunities.
  2. Value agility and take advantage of opportunities – think big here. Use this to grow your territories and provide new opportunities to your customers. Offering financing options and post-pandemic support would be a good start.
  3. Convert risk to success by your leadership skills and thinking two steps ahead of your competitor.

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