The paradigm of entrepreneurial leadership was developed at Babson College, the world’s top school for entrepreneurship. The book was written by professors Danna Greenberg, Kate McKone-Sweet and senior researcher H. James Wilson (see author bios on the book’s website). These co-authors, along with some of the top faculty at Babson College undertook two years of extensive research that uncovered three principles of successful business leadership in today’s world. Business schools have long taught that to be a successful business leader one must be confident, have a single-minded purpose, and plan strategically. However, the economic crises in the the past several years in the U.S. have shown that these characteristics of business leadership are becoming obsolete.
The competitive climate is fiercer than ever with current technologies enabling new business ideas to be rapidly prototyped and tested in the marketplace for immediate feedback. Not only has the speed of technology increased dramatically, but the cost of creating a new product or business has significantly decreased. So, strategic planning is almost obsolete soon after it is completed because the competitive landscape morphs quickly in unexpected ways that continually creates uncertainty and even unknowability.
To add to this dilemma for business leaders is the fact that many customers and other business stakeholders are now demanding companies to advance the world’s environmental and social spheres of life, not just the economic sphere. Because the business world is inter-connected with every aspect of our lives, it is becoming more and more expected of businesses to positively change our environmental and social landscape. Therefore, a single-minded focus on increasing short-term profits to shareholders will likely lead to a shrinking customer base and missed opportunities for creating greater profit over the long-term.
As you can see, the old model of business leadership that emphasizes confidence, single-minded purpose, and strategic planning might be a handicap to [Continue reading]