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Leadership Tips from Bill Gates
In 2000, during the high road of Microsoft’s success, Bill Gates wrote and published the book Business @ the Speed of Thought: Succeeding in the Digital Economy. Within he wrote about four leadership tips that he applies:
1. Take two “retreats” every year.
“Leave your office to develop long-range strategies.” Leadership transcends the tactical management and leads the strategic initiatives. A great way to refresh and refocus is to get out of the mold, so you can gain a different perspective on where things are heading.
2. Read books on other topics.
“Read books on topics that don’t pertain strictly to your business or industry. It’s the best way to maintain a broad perspective.” Leaders need to open up broad channels of input; you need to assess what other industries are doing as they impact yours. Microsoft did not attain its level of success by forgetting about their customers were doing. Their customers were small and medium businesses in healthcare, government, finance, and “mom and pop” shops, etc. All these other industries are intertwined with all the rest of the world.
3. Identify problems early.
“Identify problems early by tracking “exceptions,” such as sales figures that suddenly sag for a particular product. Jump on them right away.” Know what to expect and you will find anomalies. Once you found an anomaly, you have found a potential problem worth exploring. But, all in all, you need metrics in place to track anything.
4. Stop at the end of each day
“Stop at the end of each day to analyze how well you used it. If you wasted time on things you didn’t need to do, eliminate them tomorrow.” Just imagine how much more efficient and effective you will be!
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