A few days ago, at the end of a short talk that I gave to some university students about entrepreneurship and enterprise, a young woman approached me; in her face I could see a frank concern, which I could later deduce was the result of the topics that we had discussed. After greeting us, she asked me how she could be sure that her work as a company executive was correct and that she was on a path of professional growth. The young woman was very interested in getting a magic formula or a technical answer to her question.
After digesting her question I answered her that looking for absolute answers in a changing world was quite complicated and at times useless. The true essence of the entrepreneurial executive is his quality as a person and his ability to integrate his knowledge with his feelings and emotions, and thus achieve a homogeneous mix of competence and innovation.
When I saw my interlocutor’s face, she seemed even more worried. I asked her if she had answered her question, to which she replied in a trembling voice that if, obviously, this was not true, then I invited her to sit down for a moment to break down the ideas I was referring to.
Have you heard of the ten commandments of the church, executives as creatures of the Lord also have to fulfill 10 fundamental laws, to build a career, productive for society and successful for themselves.
They are not 10 magic formulas, nor are they easy to fulfill, nobody forces you to fulfill them, but your own conscience, but if you don’t do it, it is very sure that you won’t get far as a high level executive. I recommend that you review them and make them part of you, that you practice these rules all your business life and that you teach them to others who are on the business road.
- Schedule Your Time: Time is a limited and very valuable resource, technological innovations and modern media do not have the function to leave you more free time, but to accelerate your work more and more. On the other hand, you only have a few years to accomplish your goals, don’t waste them in gambling, nor in laziness. Take advantage of them and get all the productivity you can out of them. The time that goes away does not come back.
- Respect for People’s Dignity: Get this into your head, you are not alone. Dealing with others is inevitable and you must set an example so that in your company or in your work team, the good habits of dealing with people are cultivated. Be fair with your employees and partners, show your friends that for you, both the doorman and the investor are people who deserve respect.
- Look for the Balance in Your Company: The groups of interest are very varied in the companies, on the one hand there are the partners, on the other hand, the clients, the employees, the investors, in short, a great multitude of people who want something from the company. The bad thing is that in opportunities, those interests clash and then there is talk of privileges and preferences. The executive is capable of achieving the right balance between them.
- Be Sensible in Your Growth Projects: Many businessmen and executives who have in their hands the responsibility of planning the future of the company, seem more interested in showing astronomical performances in the present. The growth of companies must be controlled and stable in the long term, the explosions, are only air balloons that burst and fall to the ground. Do not sacrifice your future and be honest in the present
- Do not concentrate functions: Perhaps this is the most renowned and unfulfilled of the commandments. Autocracy may work in the beginning, but as time passes the executive must delegate activities to his team, this fulfills a double function. It develops the potential of its people and on the other hand it gains freedom to devote itself to high-level strategic management.
- Develop the company’s human resources: The business executive is responsible for the quality of the company’s human resources. Without a good team, it is difficult for them to develop their own capabilities. This work is done from the beginning: selecting, promoting, stimulating, and training its people. The truth is, your collaborators will never oppose to be trained to improve their quality; take advantage of it.
- Stay at the Forefront of Knowledge: The development of new knowledge did not stop when you left the classroom, even the sector where your company operates is in constant improvement. Not only must you be up to date in information, but also in training knowledge. This way you will gain the respect of your team and that of your competition.
- Be Realistic: Your company’s innovation cannot be governed by imagination and unrealistic expectations. When thinking about expanding your lines, stick to achievable and coherent projects. It is good to dream but the business environment does not forgive mistakes, an innovative posture is highly beneficial, but act on firm and concrete bases.
- Be honest: An aggressive business attitude is usually confused with illegal behavior, this should not be the case, this position will improve your image internally and externally. Do not allow corruption to creep into your organization. Be forceful in your business and play to win, but with legal tools, your reputation is at stake.
- Give Yourself Time for Your Personal Life: For many of today’s entrepreneurs, mixing their work life with their daily activities is inevitable, it lowers their performance and sometimes it can cost them much more. Not everything is the company and its business, you also have the right to live your life and talk to your family, offer them what you have achieved and enjoy it with them. Those people need your presence too.
The young woman showed an expression of satisfaction and relief, now she understood that being a successful executive was possible but that it required her effort, and she understood that the most important thing to achieve her goal was to become an Integral Human Being.