It is a term coined by Dave Ramsey, and he even wrote a whole book on it which I thoroughly recommend! In his book, Ramsey explains that success in businesses is hinged on both entrepreneurship and leadership. I love the term! And I’m jumping on the bandwagon, as I believe it aptly describes the critical success factors we need as NxtGens to transition the FamBiz successfully.
I would just add one thing if I may! Traditionally, the business world has focused on external leadership ie, delegation, leading people, resources and working to targets etc, whilst this is important, internal leadership is mission critical to us being successful NxtGens. So in our case, I humbly suggest that the critical success factors are Internal Leadership, External Leadership and Entrepreneurship.
Internal leadership refers to the inner work, the leadership of one’s inner emotions, mindset, clarity of purpose and values. It’s only when we’ve been on an inner journey in knowing self and leading self, that we can lead others soulfully (Jason Harris).
This congruence of our inner and outer selves is key, as it builds conviction. As young NxtGen leaders quite often our legitimacy and credibility may be questioned by others or quite often by our worst critics – ourselves! “Did I earn this role?”, you may ask yourself. We just cannot compete with the founding gen, who built the FamBiz from scratch, turning water into wine. Leading our inner selves to match our outer actions, gives us a source of power that is unrivaled, sourced from authenticity, vulnerability and empathy.
Going on that self-discovery gives us clarity of purpose, and that is exuded when we lead others. In his book, “Start with Why”, Simon Sinek, explains that purpose is critical to inspiring people to action and transformation. As NxtGens we may not be able to win the game of leadership through authoritative leadership, but we can through persuasive inspirational leadership, with clarity of purpose.
I reckon the greatest leaders of this century will be those that master the leadership of self. Our world has become a little bit complicated we can all agree! With increasing wealth disparities, disruption of business models, demographic pressure on business and society at large, and declining trust in institutions, those that are able to lead with authenticity, vulnerability and empathy will have a cutting edge.