The Entrepreneur’s Attitude
I am often asked what is the essential aspect of a good CEO? There are many of course, but if I have to select only one, I always say a “Learning Disposition”. If you are prepared to learn at all times then those aspects which are the negative side of your personality, that are likely to inhibit success are less likely to be there, or at least to be more suppressed.
When explaining this to a group of founders from a number of companies recently during a mentoring session, my bullet point summary was as follows:
- Learning disposition is key
- You’ll never know it all
- You’ll continue to learn
- I still do
- You’ll make mistakes
- Learn from them
- Learn from others
- especially your own team
- you do not have a monopoly of good ideas
- nor are all your ideas right
But of course as a leader you need to know when to make a decision too, to not vacillate, but just get on with it – and most often on incomplete information, or on intuition (which itself is I believe based on your previous learning anyway).
I was at the Entrepreneur Country forum in London this last Tuesday pitching my business DAD, when I heard perhaps the best summary of this combination of Learning Disposition and Decision Making which has to be at the heart of any Entrepreneur.
Gil Mandelzis, the CEO of Traiana, did a keynote speech on the lessons he has learnt since starting Traiana, going through several near company death experiences, until creating what is a hugely successful business. Extracting directly from his lessons learnt slide he said:
- Just do it
- Prior knowledge is at best overrated & often a disadvantage
- But being independent doesn’t justify being ignorant
- Take advice, but make your own decision
Thank you Gil, I have learnt how to be more concise is summing up the essential aspect of an Entrepreneur!