What It Means To Be A Leader
During my time in the U.S. Army as an Army Staff Sergeant, I learned valuable lessons about leading teams to the successful completion of projects. I learned that by following the direction of good leaders, one could build the confidence and skill set necessary to become a successful leader.
Good leaders quickly separate themselves from the masses of people who simply live day-by-day doing only the bare minimum to keep their job one more day. In other words, leaders stand out in a crowd of managers and workers.
While the Army tried hard to bring leadership qualities out in all of their people, the truth was that leaders are those who decide to go the extra mile and to create a brighter future for themselves and others around them.
A good leader is simply the person who “helps” you to become the best person you can become, by teaching you how you can “help” other people to become successful too.
One Decision Can Change Your Destiny
Are you waiting?
Are you waiting for “me” to tell “you” the secret to success?
It is time for “you” to make a decision, now.
You must decide to stop waiting for success to come to you. Success simply will not fall out of the sky into your open arms. It does not work that way.
You must “decide” to become successful. If you are waiting for success, then success will never come your way. But, once you understand that success is waiting for you, and you decide to go get it, no matter what, then you will have changed your destiny for the better.
Follow In The Footsteps Of People Whom You Wish To Emulate
While I was in the U.S. Army, I learned how to seek out leaders who were willing to share with me their secrets to success. I actively sought out people who could help me to become a better leader.
Even in my daily life outside of the Army, I found several opportunities to hook up with people who exuded leadership qualities, people who were willing to share with me their own secrets to success.
The truth is that there are people who may doubt their own abilities to have something to share, but if they doubt themselves, they are wrong. Everyone has something important to teach others, but it takes a gem of a person to understand that the role of a leader is to teach others, what “they” take for granted.
A Lifetime Of Learning Over Lunch
Just the other day, I had lunch with a fellow who is probably responsible for selling more cars in our area than anyone else. In our local metropolitan market, if someone asks about a great car dealer, his name will surely be mentioned.
My lunch partner knew that I have a successful website, and he also knew that I had an interest in learning more about what is required to be successful, from him.
To my surprise, his first words were, “Clinton, I don’t know if I can offer anything to you that would help you. I sell cars, and that is what I do. You have some kind of online business, and I cannot even venture to guess how you make your money.“
My lunch partner went on to say, “I appreciate the offer to share a lunch with you, but your business and my business are so different. I would not even know where to begin in giving advice to you.”
Despite his initial hesitation, we went on to have a great meal, and I learned a lot! I could literally spin several articles just on the knowledge that he was able to impart to me over lunch.
If You Want To Be Rich, Listen To Rich People
Online and offline, I like to associate with people who have been successful in their fields. I learn so much about growing my business, by listening closely to people who have defined their industries.
Even online, there are key people whom I pay close attention. With every conversation, I hear some gem of information that I can apply to my own online business. These tidbits of information pieced together have helped me carry my website from one in millions to one that has served more than a million visitors.
Success In Three Simple Repeatable Steps
My car dealer friend finally put aside the idea that he could not help anyone outside his own industry, and we had great conversation.
When I asked him the secret to selling cars, he said he could sum it up in three steps:
- Talk to your customers. When you understand the needs of your customers, then you know how you will best be able to help them solve their problems and achieve their goals.
- Follow-Up. People rarely buy on their first visit, so it is important to follow-up with them. When buying big-ticket items, people tend to shop around a little bit more. When you follow-up, you are frequently creating a relationship with your customer. When all is said and done, if two products are substantially equal, it is often the relationship the customer has with the sales person that will “seal the deal.”
- Be persistent. Persistence does not equate to being pushy. Persistence means that you follow-up, once, twice, three times, and more if necessary. If a salesperson is obviously “only” interested in satisfying his or her own interests, then persistence could be construed as pushy. But, when your goal is to be persistent with the goal of helping the customer solve his or her problems and satisfy his or her goals, then persistence is a quality to be appreciated.
Learning Anew Each Day
Bill Platt at The Phantom Writers (http://www.thephantomwriters.com) taught me the same lesson last year. Bill always tells me that the secret to success online is “consistency.” He says that we need to talk to our potential customers, and we need to keep the conversation going by consistently talking to potential customer base.
John Reese of Marketing Secrets (http://www.marketingsecrets.com) taught me the same lesson. He emphasized that I need to develop a newsletter or an auto-responder series so that I could create and keep an ongoing conversation with my potential customers. Reese also taught me to track my results (follow-up) on everything that I do for my business.
Since I started my website in 2001, I have noticed that all of my mentors tend to teach me the same lessons over and again in their own terminology.
All of my mentors continue to tell me to talk to my customers, follow-up, and to be persistent in talking to my customers
With so many people who are successful in their own industries sharing with me the same sage advice, I tend to pay attention.
It does not matter whether you seek to use this information to help your career or to build an online business.
Make your decision today; decide to be successful. And then follow the golden rule of helping others to achieve what they want to achieve, follow-up, and be persistent in your efforts.
If you play your cards just right, in just a few years, you might be the mentor that we will all want to attentively listen to and appreciate.