Build a Business That Works for You Using “Company of One” Concepts

Part 2: Leadership Qualities

Our series inspired by Paul Jarvis’s book Company of One: Why Staying Small Is the Next Big Thing for Business continues! To refresh your memory on what our first article covered, “company of one” isn’t defined as a one-person business. Rather, it refers to running a business resourcefully and not trying to grow a company for the sake of growth itself.

Today, we’ll focus on Company of One leadership qualities and the nuances of growth (covered in chapters three and four of Jarvis’s book).

What characteristics do effective leaders have in common?

Leaders who embody Company of One principles share many of the same qualities:

  • They have well-rounded business acumen; in other words, they know a little about a lot!
  • They have good communication skills.
  • They are resilient.
  • They understand what motivates people.
  • They are decisive and focused.
  • They know when to say “when” and how to avoid getting burned out.

Note that excellent leaders aren’t necessarily charismatic. Introverts can—and do—make stellar leaders.

How do they approach growth?

Smart leaders think of growth not as a goal but as a result of improved products or services. They don’t let their egos drive growth. Instead, they pay attention to what will benefit their customers. That’s especially important for small businesses with limited resources; it costs about five times more to acquire new customers than to keep existing ones!

By approaching growth as an effect of serving their customers optimally, leaders make it clear that they are in tune with their greatest strengths.

Stay tuned: In our next Company of One article, we’ll touch on how a leader’s mindset affects business success.

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