Professional leaders have a host of responsibilities and tasks. Being able to gauge your effectiveness as a leader is an important part of your on-going progress and that of your convenience store. Your leadership is what drives your employees and business to success, so being the best leader you can is important to everyone and everything related to your convenience store. It can often be difficult to critically examine your own leadership traits and then objectively set a course for improvement. I believe there are several key traits that will guide your quest for improved leadership actions, therefore improving your team, and convenience store business. This is not an exhaustive list, but it does contain critical points that when focused on, will enhance your whole operation. I have broken these key areas into 5 specific traits that affect leadership and growth.
Professional Leader Checklist
1. Commitment to On-going Improvement. This means that you are committed to developing yourself and your employees, mostly yourself. This development starts with individual skill assessment and developing an improvement plan. Assessing others is much easier than objectively assessing your own skills, but being critical of your self assessment will pay dividends far greater than simply believing you are fine now, everyone else must improve for your team to soar. Great businesses are lead by great leaders. So, get into gear by developing your own developmental improvement plan first. Do you clearly communicate your plans with the whole team? Do you include and consider others opinions in your decision making?
2. Monitor Key Results. Leaders must have readily accessible numbers that are key indicators of their business success. A leader has to know the difference between numbers that reflect a lot of busy work being processed and the numbers that actually drive the business into growth. Clear the way for your employees to make progress on factors that actually grow the business. Don’t allow yourself and your team to get stuck with time wasting projects. Monitor the result oriented numbers and manage the processes that support their growth. Supporting growth might mean examining all of the tools your team uses and making sure they have what they need to help you succeed.
3. Be Realistic and Flexible. Being realistic and flexible will allow your company to take advantage of unforeseen opportunities as they arise. It will also give you the freedom to reconsider outdated or ineffective methods of operation, so your company can change and grow. Flexible means that you are not so set in your ways that you cannot reconsider ineffective plans or goals that are getting in your way. How realistic are your action plans and goals? How flexible are you in managing work, people, and situations?
4. Positive Communication. Being able to motivate your team relies on your ability to assess the current environment, develop strong action plans and goals, and then motivating each individual to their best levels of performance. You can’t do that with without being positive about their skills. Remember you are the team’s coach. You have to inspire them to higher performance through building on their strengths. Positive communication means that they know you appreciate their hard work and want to see them grow with you.
5. Have a Clear Vision. Last but not least is to have a clear vision of what you want your business to achieve. A clear vision that every employee understands and knows their role in making that vision a reality. A vision should be what you expect your business to look like in the next two to three year period. How much will you grow in that time? What plans will you put into place to help make that vision come true? How will you coach your team to embrace and contribute to this new level of growth?
Using the 5 points from the Leader’s Checklist will help you build a stronger team, and carry out the important growth tasks that help you succeed as a business. How are you and your team going to address issues like reducing shrinkage, and increasing your profit margins? Deciding on C-Store Office can dramatically improve your chances of success this year.
C-Store Office from Petrosoft was created by convenience store owners, just like you, to help you save time and make more money. It is a powerful internet based back office system that delivers big business power for businesses of any size.
* Manage Inventory and reduce shrinkage with detailed tracking by store, category, or item.
* Increase GPM and add thousands of extra dollars to your bottom line every month with optimal stocking levels and automatic ordering tools.
* Full EDI capabilities will allow you to communicate electronically with your suppliers.
* No extra set up costs or licensing fees, monthly subscription available
* Access the secure site from your web browser, no need for IT personnel