All founders are ambitious but can you spot a great founder?

Great founders separate themselves from others in their marketplace by their attitude, behaviour and focus on the growth journey.

Characterised by 17 factors, these include the following:

  1. Great founders play to their personal strengths and surround themselves with talented people with the skills and expertise they don’t possess.
  2. They are happy to acknowledge ‘they don’t know what they don’t now’.
  3. Great founders also know when to hand the leadership baton onto others in order to take their business to the next level of growth. They know when to let go and when to say no.
  4. Great founders have a real sense of ‘purpose and meaning’ which enables them to remain focused on the journey, innovate when appropriate and make changes which will keep the business and its people on track.
  5. Great founders never compromise on the personal values important to them and the unique spirit that inspires the people in their company on a daily basis.
  6. Great founders are authentic leaders. They think and operate in the ‘real world’.
  7. Great founders have the ability to inspire others to join them and stay with them on what at times, may appear to be an impossibly challenging and difficult journey. Their personal ambition and vision for the business offers an attractive, alternative and exciting journey experience. Work life will never be dull.
  8. Great Founders are able to remain focused – particularly when faced with unforeseen challenges – on the ambitious ‘bigger picture’ whilst staying close to the day-to-day operational requirements of the organisation. Under pressure they excel as leaders, inspiring confidence and calmness in others.
  9. Great Founders have a sixth sense of what is ‘right and wrong’ for the company and its people at any time on the journey. More importantly they will act immediately on their instincts.
  10. Great founders place a great emphasis on personal integrity and trust. They are accessible to everyone connected to their company. Reputation is important to them. Receiving feedback from others forms an important part of their communication grapevine.
  11. Great founders are kind individuals and this is reflected in the relationships they enjoy with suppliers, partners, stakeholders as well as their own employees.
  12. Great founders are modest about their contribution towards the success of their business and are happy for others to take the credit.
  13. They accept responsibility when things go wrong. They don’t play the ‘blame game’. They remain grounded throughout the journey and use their experience to keep others level headed, particularly when spectacular success is achieved.
  14. Great founders create memorable journeys.
  15. Great founders are great leaders.
  16. Great founders identify, inspire and develop other great leaders.
  17. Great founders celebrate success however small on the journey.

Great founders are rare.

Best wishes on your journey, wherever it may take you.

John

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