Are You Guilty of These Seven Deadly Sins?

John Krautzel
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Successful leaders create thriving businesses. Like championship chess players, owners and CEOs must put strategies in place to expand their businesses, make a positive impact on the workplace and foster understanding of the long-term goals of the company.

There are seven deadly sins of business leadership that can hinder company growth. A company sinks or swims based on how well an owner or the executive team runs the ship. Avoid these mistakes and you could become a successful leader with a growing business.

1. Rushing the Hiring Process

Companies that hurry when hiring new people are trying to keep productive momentum going forward. However, rushing through the hiring process may backfire if you fail to hire qualified candidates. Having to go back and hire for a position a second time takes much longer than getting the right person the first time. Use techniques such as keyword searches and video chat interviews early in the process to save time, money and effort.

2. Assuming Employees Know Company Goals

Successful leaders know the company mission statement by heart, but that doesn't mean all of your employees know it. Understanding the company's long-term goals, purpose and objectives help keep employees grounded as they see how their day-to-day efforts lead to greater overall achievements.

3. Failing to Develop Team Skills

Every team member has a different skill set, and successful leaders recognize those skills. Foster the skills your team lacks through appropriate training. If someone is naturally friendly and talkative, perhaps you should train that person to be a customer service expert. Don't be afraid to invest in improving your team, and be sure encourage each employee's individual passions.

4. Forgetting to Evaluate Your Business Honestly

Successful leaders continually evaluate their business model to adapt to trends. Otherwise, revenues suffer. Eschew the mantra "that's how it's always been done" and note areas that need improvement. Keeping a close eye on industry trends, customer attitudes and internal processes can help you save money while improving products and service.

5. Withholding Feedback

Employees need more than just regular assessments to help them improve. Give constructive feedback continuously, not just during annual performance reviews. You don't track profits and productivity just once a year, so why would you wait that long to give employees valuable information for their growth?

6. Presuming Your Business Does a Great Job

Just because you haven't heard any complaints about your company doesn't mean they don't exist. Make sure employees at all levels feel comfortable relaying feedback to senior management. Without honest data or relevant feedback, your business may miss key information it needs to improve. Monitor social media, online feedback forms and review websites to get a more complete picture of how people see your products and services.

7. Failing to Constantly Market Your Goods and Services

Marketing campaigns, like employees, must continually change to keep up with trends. Data, research, public relations and advertising are all crucial elements your marketing staff needs to assess your strategies. New marketing campaigns prevent stale messaging, build your brand recognition and help bring in new customers.

Successful leaders must be aware all aspects of a company, from big-picture concepts to day-to-operations. Understanding the seven deadly sins that destroy companies, and avoiding them before they occur, leads to improved products and better business practices.

Photo courtesy of SCA Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget at



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