For years I wanted to be an entrepreneur. To me, that meant owning my own business and doing my own thing; not having to commute to a company and work for “the man”. (Truth be told, I’m just not wired to thrive in that kind of environment).
… to a point.
Problem was, years down the road, I found myself in a different place: I was successful by some measures but also struggling by other measures: I began to discover that I was the bottleneck in my own business. I was hitting a ceiling because I was trying to do it all.
Later, I built systems to help me create better content and serve more clients faster.
Later, I started building replicatable, duplicatable products and commoditized services that allowed me to shorten the timeline between client acquisition and deliverable.
Later, I started building a team—first an assistant and then writers, even going so far as to create what might be considered an agency.
- A leader in the industries I serve: by being a thought leader and influencing brand
- A leader for my clients: by helping clients elevate their knowledge, make decisions, and see results
- A leader of people: by building a team and providing them with an income while having an impact
- A leader of innovation: by leveraging what I know and do to create new opportunities for my clients and team
- A leader of the future: I lead my industry, my clients, and team, toward a bolder, brighter future
It’s a journey for me. If you’d asked me years ago if I thought I would be a leader, the answer would be a resounding no… simply because the only thing I wanted was to be a self-employed writer.
But I realize now: that “self-employed writer” was just step 1. And since that realization, I’ve been on a path of ascension and am constantly learning to embrace my new role as leader.
Want to make the same ascension yourself? Make this simple change to your thinking to get you moving in this direction: Find more people to rely on you. Whether it’s the industry at large, your clients, or your team; build a business that compels other people need to rely on you for your expertise, skills, compensation, etc. It’s weird; there’s not a “thing” you need first before becoming a leader, just build a business that gets people to rely on you.
When I was “just” a self-employed writer, my job was to wake up each day, sit down at my computer, and writer. Today, as a leader of my industry, clients, people, innovation, and the future, my job is much different: I must constantly build; growing my knowledge, authority, and business to fulfill my role as a leader.
It’s a higher level and a bigger challenge but if I want to take part in a bigger and more opportunitistic future, being a leader is the only way.