Small Business Leadership Training for Future Leaders

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Whether you’re looking towards a distant future or preparing for an upcoming transition out of your small business, the thought of leaving all of your hard work in the hands of someone new can cause a lot of anxiety and a lot of questions.Where are you going to find the talent? What if you have to transition out unexpectedly? What if your business legacy is destroyed by someone who doesn’t have the passion that you do? While these questions are valid, they are also solvable with proper planning. The best way to ensure that the future leaders of your small business are cut out for the job are to create procedures and opportunities for small business leadership training.

But with strategic thinking, time, money, and resources today, you can help ensure that you are leaving your small business dreams in capable hands. 

Need help getting started with the process of identifying and guiding the next generation of business owners? Start with these three tips, and customize them to match the exact needs of your company:

Encourage Participation in Conferences and Trainings

There are nearly infinite resources that exist for small business leadership training, many of which are tailor made for those who are seeking entrepreneurial opportunities, but don’t have a business of their own yet. There, they will be able to rub elbows with other young, hungry future leaders like themselves, gaining invaluable networking skills while also honing their abilities to handle a business. 

If you need help identifying training or conferences that are available, there is a constantly updated resource list on the Find Courses website. 

Let Them Make Mistakes

As a small business owner, it’s understandable that you prefer to handle things yourself. An article from Maxwell Davies has a list of the top 10 most common stress triggers in small business owners, and many of them come from your efforts to keep things running like a well-oiled machine, even to the detriment of your health or personal happiness. When surveyed, entrepreneurs said that these were their top concerns:

  • 42%: Staff management
  • 35% Administration work and bookkeeping
  • 31% Feeling responsible for the company success, or failure
  • 26%: Keeping up with compliance and regulations
  • 24%: Overhead and expenses
  • 23%: Keeping clients happy
  • 20%: “Imposter” syndrome
  • 19%: Filing taxes
  • 17%: Time and deadline pressure
  • 14%: Multitasking

Every person who runs a small business feels those same pressures, especially when you consider our need to ensure, personally, that everything is done to a particular standard. But one of the best ways you can provide small business leadership training for future leaders is by allowing them to shoulder some of that responsibility, once you’ve helped them get their feet wet. 

According to Investopedia, “… A common reason small businesses fail is lack of business acumen on the part of the management team for business owners… While said owner may have the skills necessary to create and sell a viable product or service, they often lack the attributes of a strong manager and don’t have the time to successfully oversee other employees.” That means that the best preparation you can give your future leaders is the chance to grow independently, while still having you around as backup in case anything goes wrong or they need additional support. 

Continue Your Own Growth

If you are planning on nurturing your future small business leaders, you must also take the time to continue to grow in your field. It’s tempting to let your trainee take the reins more and more as they become more deft at the job, but changes happen in the business world very quickly. For example, just this year, ecommerce growth accelerated five years sooner than it was expected, leaving businesses of all sorts the chance to jump into a whole new world of digital opportunities. An inexperienced next generation leader may have the technical know-how of working in that realm, but they don’t have your patience, agility, and foresight that can only come from experience. 

The best way to ensure that your business continues to grow upwards and outwards in the future is to walk alongside your future leaders as they train. Every roundtable group, conference, and online class that they take is going to reinforce fundamental skills, while also keeping pace with changes in the business industry. Your willingness to continue your personal growth will help you navigate those changes and give your protege a fighting chance at keeping your small business successful far into the future. 

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