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Lead Your Team Leadership

Leadership Lessons: Let People Take Ownership of Their Goals

Leadership Lessons: Let People Take Ownership of Their Goals

There's no one "right" way to lead a business. Today's leaders have a lot of wisdom to impart about managing the modern workforce, because each one approaches leadership in his or her own unique way. Every week, Business News Daily will share a leadership lesson from a successful business owner or executive.

  • The leader: Richard Jalichandra, CEO of Bodybuilding.com (former CEO of MapMyFitness, Technorati and iSocket)
  • Time in current position: 8 months
  • Richard's philosophy: "Allow people to take ownership of their goals and to be entrepreneurial in reaching them." (Click to tweet)

People perform better when they're allowed to take ownership. My philosophy is to help people set goals, then get out of the way and allow them to be entrepreneurial in how they reach those goals.

I manage the way I like to be managed, and remember the ways I was successful as an employee earlier in my career. I am dyslexic, so I never did well when someone said, "Here are the instructions," or, "This is how you do it." When I was forced to do things a certain way, I usually failed; my brain simply didn't work that way. 

However, when a manager said "Here's what we're trying to accomplish," and then left me alone, I always performed at a very high level. I was empowered to think for myself, be creative, and develop unique solutions. As my career progressed, I began managing people the same way, and it not only produced great results, but also made people happier and more satisfied with their jobs.

The other major leadership principle I live by is making myself irrelevant. If I do my job well, I could disappear, and the business wouldn't know the difference; it would keep running flawlessly. This means hiring the smartest and most ambitious people possible, helping them to develop their own talents, and giving them the room to grow and succeed on their own. This also means letting go of responsibilities myself, and continually handing them off to anyone and everyone who wants more ownership, autonomy, and growth.