Guest Blog: Leadership for the Solo Entrepreneur?

Recently, I was lucky enough to host a book club discussion for Hanging the Mirror.

I was immediately drawn to this book because, in my work as a consultant to small business owners, I feel like the biggest problem they face is not access to smart strategies or good workers.  The most pressing problem is a lack of self reflection within their business.

So often, I work with clients who are quick to point fingers to external forces that impact their business.  What’s always missing is a sense of personal responsibility for the choices they make in their business.

The group discussing the book was made up of small business owners including some solo-entrepreneurs with no staff.

The most divisive issue that emerged during the discussion was whether or not a book on leadership was relevant to someone who doesn’t have any staff.  Do you need to acquire leadership skills if you have no staff to lead?

What I learned from Hanging the Mirror is that the concept of self-reflection is relevant to any business owner regardless of whether or not he or she has staff.  Every business benefits from an owner who can reflect on their beliefs and recognize how those beliefs impact the actions they take within their business.

Even if you’re starting as a solo-entrepreneur, it’s likely that you will be growing and bringing on staff.  It’s never too early to start learning about what makes a great leader, and Hanging the Mirror is precisely the book that will help you understand how to excel in that role.

Holly Howard is the founder of Ask Holly How, a New York City based consulting company focused on helping skilled artisans make the leap to become savvy entrepreneurs.  See for more information.   

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