There are many ways in which leaders push people to grow. Below I’ll explain the 4 common paths to leading people, the 4 archetypes of leadership.
You’ll need to study these if you want to be an effective leader!
Each has it’s own set of pros and cons, so make sure to weight them all out before dismissing one over the other. Each is more suited for a certain stage of a company’s development.
This is the guy who usually gives short but profund speeches to his staff. You might or might not seem him much at the office, but when he is there he makes sure to share his vision with his employees.
Having a “WHY” behind your employees jobs will drive them to be more productive, work overtime, think about the business when they’re at home or on vacation. These are the types of people who will make you rich. New studies show that the old, mechanical way of motivating people just doesn’t work anymore when you’re dealing with contemporary jobs. These new jobs require complex tasks and creative ways in which to fix certain problems.
Let’s take a large IT company. I won’t name any particular one, because I’m a loving, non-differentiating person (Apple).
A customer care person from this IT company has much more stimulating, thought-provoking interactions with clients than a customer care person who worked at Ford in the 1950. The technology is more complex, the customer wants more, he askes more questions and overall expects to receive more. As he should! This is 2012!
In these conditions, you need people in customer care who not only understand what you are doing with your company, you need them to believe in the grand goal, all-encompassing mission of your company. It has to have meaning. That’s the only way in which your people will care about answering the clients evermore complex demands.
The visionary entrepreneur is a genius when it’s time to convey to his staff the company’s meaning and role in the world.
If you don’t believe me, check out this video explaining what drives employees to more productivity in this day and age.
Examples: Steve Jobs, Richard Branson, Elon Musk
- You’re perceived by the public as an awesome entrepreneur
- Loved by your staff
- You have harmony in the work enviroment
- Not enough micromanagement
- Risky if you make a mistake and you hire the wrong people
- You’re sharing your vision to much with your relatives, shut up!
The Serial Entrepreneur
This archetype is a bit more geared towards making profit. He doesn’t really care about his company that much. He only wants it to succed and make him money. He could care less about the industry he’s in. The company is only a vehicle meant to drive him to his goal.
He doesn’t have a meaning attached to his company. He motivates his people by monetary incentives and bonuses. Although this all might not sound too good, there are some advantages to being a Serial Entrepreneur.
For one, you don’t get emotionally involved with the company. By not doing so, you can always sell it if the price is right. As I’ve always said, the big money is usually made when you exit a business. That’s the biggest check. That’s what The Serial Entrepeneur is looking for. The Big Kahuna.
But his own doing will be his undoing. Usually he will not reach the highest level, the billionaire status. Some will, but most entrepreneurs who choose this road won’t. That’s because growing a business to a very large extent means sticking with it when the going goes tough. No true Serial Entrepeneur will suffer more than one year. After that he will seek to sell and cash out.
Examples: Samwer brothers
- You make money faster than any other archetype
- You’re never broke, the bank account is always growing
- Always have an idea for a new business
- Your staff is less motivated
- Can’t own a giant company
- You won’t usually reach a billion dollars
The hero entrepreneur is the one which leads his people into battle, marching into the enemy troops, not thinking about his own safety. By doing this, he inspires his subordinates to follow in his footsteps so that they too can be as heroic as the leader.
Much like Mel Gibson, you will motivate them by example. You will not only work besides them, but also inspire them to outwork you. You’re the first through the door in the morning and the last one gone, way into the night.
You make a promise to yourself to “Go hard”!
In doing so, you will not see your children grow. You wife will probably divorce many times before finally moving to another country with the young guy who used to clean the pool. Lucky for the pool guy, he now married a millionaire. Your ex-wife!
But don’t worry about that, you still have half of what you worked for. And a big half it is. About 750 million!
So what should you do with it? Should you buy a Burj-Al Arab apartament? Maybe go on a skydiving experience with friends? Or a deep diving extravaganza in the Mariana Trench?!
No, sorry, you won’t do that. You can’t really buy an apartament in Dubai, you’ll never be there! You can’t go skydiving with friends, the only friends you have are your employees and they can’t afford it! You don’t want to go diving anywhere, you don’t really know how to swim!
The Hero/Worker archetype is useful, but must be used with caution. Don’t be this guy forever.
Examples: Felix Dennis
- You can achieve awesome levels of success
- Your staff will be motivated and proud to be working for you
- You’re likely to achieve any goal you set
- You might die sooner than others
- Your family will suffer greatly
- You might become too emotional attached to a failing business
I’ve saved the best for last.
Here’s the shaman, the entrepeneur who, unlike the worker, stays away from the tribe, away from his employees. He might sit on a rock, somewhere by the river. Or in more modern circumstances, at home in his underwear! Nevertheless, he watches from a distance as his people work. Some people might interpret him as arrogant:
“How can he just sit there and not get involved when his people are slaving away?!”
But no my friend, the shaman is not siting. He is waiting. He doesn’t get involved because that would not add value. He has already chosen the members of his tribe, each being the best fit for that position. The PR is good, Marketing is good, Management is good.
The shaman is there for one thing and one thing only!
To foresee the future and adapt current affairs according to that vision.
Do not mistake him for The Visionary Entrepeneur, because he is not. He will, more often than not, share nothing of his vision with the team. But his team will respect him enough to trust his sometimes “freaky weird” ideas and implement them in the workflow.
The job of The Shaman Entrepeneur is to change the game, adapt his tribe in order to be ahead of other tribes. He must bring forth ideas that innovate and result in massive added value for his company. The sort of ideas in which you change 10% of something and you receive a 300% increase in productivity.
Those ideas are hard to find, but when they come, you’ll be praised for your intelligence and foresight!
The price that you must pay for these ideas is your time. You’ll never know how long it will be until the next big idea, and as such, you must trust in yourself to deliver them again, even when your tribe’s trust is dwindling.
This path has the most potential for growth in my mind, but it is also the most complex and risky to take. Many entrepreneurs preferrer being The Worker or The Hero rather than risking it all with The Shaman approach.
Examples: Warren Buffett
- When applied correctly, the greatest growth of all archetypes
- You work less, have more free time
- Enjoy enormous amounts of respect and adoration
- Need massive self-confidence
- You’ll have more mental challenges
- When you fail, you will be ridiculed
Do not fool yourself into thinking you can be all entrepreneurial types. The holistic way of trying to incorporate all archetypes into one just doesn’t work. For example, if you try to be both The Hero and The Shaman, you will become the worst kind of entrepreneur.
You’ll be The Poor one. Decide on just one.
Don’t worry, you won’t be that forever. Part of growing your business means switching your archetype. In the begining, if you’re a startup, you might need be The Hero, but as the company grows, you’ll need to become The Visionary. If you run a large multinational organization, being The Shaman is your best bet.