Archive for the ‘Chris Niarchos’ Category

How to earn respect as a business leader

Respect isn’t something that business leaders can simply expect; it is something they must earn. My career has taught me that if someone wants to be well regarded by their team members and the business community more widely, they have to show leadership, courage and a range of other compelling characteristics. Following are some of the qualities and actions that I believe to be crucial if you want to be respected by the people around you.

Lead by example.

To inspire your team to be diligent and committed, you must lead by example and be an inspirational and positive role model.

Those in the Appco Group network will most certainly have heard this business described as one where we “show don’t tell”. And I believe this is extremely important because people are much more likely to respect and emulate you if they know that you practice what you preach.

On the other hand, if they see that there are differences between your personal approach to work and the approach you expect others to adopt, they will be less likely to trust you as a leader.

Set high standards.

I am also a great believer in setting high standards for yourself and for the people around you.

If others see that you’re willing to cut corners or you’re prepared to settle for mediocrity, their estimations of you are likely to fall and their own standards may drop.

My experience tells me that people are most likely to respond to a leader who strives to achieve the very best in all they do, and who challenges them to do the same. The harder you work for something, the more you value it.

Have the courage to make bold decisions.

Having the foresight and nerve to make bold business decisions will earn you self respect as well as the respect of others. For example, challenging the status quo and step out of your comfort zone in order to improve your company may be a difficult move in the short term, but this is the only way to develop as a business leader.

And, even if a decision doesn’t work out the way you planned, you will gain respect for taking the leap and, just as importantly, learning from the experience regardless of the outcome.

The leaders who people really look up to have the courage of their convictions and are prepared to take action even when the odds seem stacked against them.

Show respect for and appreciation of those around you.

Showing respect for others is essential because, as I highlighted in a previous blog, every great entrepreneur needs a great team around them.

Acknowledging the successes of your team members, rewarding their hard work and treating them with courtesy and respect, will build people’s trust in you as a leader and encourages the same qualities in them. On the other hand, failing to recognise the achievements of others can dent morale and the ultimate success of your organisation.

Be confident in your abilities.

This plays a big part in gaining the respect of others. After all, if you don’t believe in yourself, you will have a hard time convincing others to back you.

There may be times when you doubt yourself and wonder if you are up to the job of running your company, but it is crucial that you stay positive and have faith in your skills as a leader, and in those around you.

 

Chris Niarchos knows exactly what it takes to earn respect as a leader. As founder and chairman of the Cobra Group of Companies, he oversees an impressive portfolio of businesses. For more facts about Chris Niarchos, check out this Bloomberg Business profile.

How to harness the potential of your team

My experience in business have taught me that having a skilled, dedicated team around you is essential if you are to achieve your goals. Without talented and effective people by your side, it can prove impossible to realise your (and their) ambitions. With this in mind, I’ve put together a brief guide to help you harness the potential of your team.

Invest in training or mentoring

All the best business leaders understand the crucial role that effective training and/or mentoring plays within companies. By providing people with all the support and coaching they need, you can help ensure they are able to perform effectively and confidently in their roles. These development opportunities shouldn’t be reserved for new starters. It’s important to offer employees and contractors the chance to enhance their knowledge and skills on an ongoing basis so that they’re equipped to be the best possible ambassadors for your business.

Reward good work

People are much more likely to stretch themselves and go above and beyond the basics of their role requirements if they know they are appreciated and will be recognised for their efforts. As well as praising people on an informal basis, it’s useful to have official procedures in place to celebrate good work, such as awards and prizes.

Across the global Appco Group network, each country hosts an annual convention to celebrate and recognise the incredible efforts of the independent field representatives and marketing companies in our network. It’s a great way to publicly acknowledge people’s hard work and achievements.

Providing people with opportunities for progression that reflect their diligence and skill is vital too. If your team members feel their input is valued, they are more likely to remain focussed and loyal.

Put effective communication procedures in place

Another way to nurture talent within your company is to set up effective two-way communication and feedback procedures. These sessions can help people to identify their strengths and weaknesses and foster a culture of accountability and openness. People are also likely to feel happier in their roles and perform better if there is an established system in place for getting guidance and feedback.

Your people should also feel confident about approaching their line managers, or others in their team, if they spot any problems. If they know they can raise concerns, contractors and employees alike can help ensure that any issues are tackled before they escalate and potentially do damage to your business.

Provide a clear company message

It’s essential to provide everyone connected with your business with a clear company message that they can relate to and support. When people understand that they are working towards a common goal and feel as though they are part of a team, they are more enthused and energised about their work – and you are in a much stronger position to achieve your business objectives.

 

Chris Niarchos is the founder and chairman of the Cobra Group of Companies, which includes AGS Global Fundraising Services. You can find out more about Chris Niarchos’ charity fundraising by visiting the AGS Global Fundraising Services website.

4 skills that will set you apart in business

Anyone can set up their own company, but it takes a certain type of person to climb to the very top in the business arena. Following are four skills that I believe help to set people apart as successful entrepreneurs. If you are planning to start your own company, it’s worth asking yourself which of these skills you already have and which ones need to be developed.

 

1. Excellent communication

Being an effective business-person is about more than having great ideas. To achieve your goals, you must also be a convincing communicator. As well as delivering powerful presentations to potential investors or customers, you will need to use language that motivates and energises the team you put together around you.

Don’t be put off if your communication skills aren’t quite up-to-scratch right now; this is something you can work on over time – and the more experience you have, the more confident and effective you are likely to be when it comes to expressing your ideas.

Many of the best business communicators were lacking in confidence and finesse when they first started out as entrepreneurs.

 

2. Foresight

Market conditions are continually changing, so to achieve lasting success with your company, you must have the foresight required to anticipate new trends and developments.

For this reason, successful businesspeople tend to be natural innovators. They are curious about what lies ahead and are always looking for ways to improve their companies and to address the challenges not just of the present, but also of the future.

This allows them to create dynamic, flexible businesses that are robust in the face of change. In contrast, those who are reluctant to move with the times are likely to get left behind by their more forward-looking competitors.

 

3. The ability to discover and nurture talent

No matter how talented businesspeople are, they can’t keep their companies running singlehandedly.

All savvy entrepreneurs understand that to make a success of their companies, they must put together a team of skilled and dedicated people. As well as discovering talented individuals, this involves nurturing people’s skills to enable them to fulfil their potential.

To do this, it is necessary to offer appropriate training and mentoring, give people attractive career development opportunities and reward hard work and success. Those who fail to understand the significance of discovering and harnessing talent can quickly run into problems.

 

4. Strong organisational skills

Knowing how to plan and prioritise tasks helps entrepreneurs to meet important deadlines and to stay on top of their hectic workloads.

Without a strong time-management strategy in place, businesspeople can find it impossible to deliver products or services on time and to the necessary standards – and their stress levels can soar as a result.

 

With decades of experience as an entrepreneur, Chris Niarchos at the Cobra Group has detailed knowledge of the skills and traits that people need in order to thrive in the business world.

Is fear of failure standing in your way?

As a business leader, I am well aware of the challenges associated with fulfilling your potential and striving for success. One of the biggest barriers that can stand in people’s way is the fear of failure – all too often, it prevents talented people from pursuing their dreams. However, there are ways to tackle this obstacle. Following are some insights that could help you to free yourself from self-doubt.

Embrace and accept your mistakes

Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. If you test your abilities and embrace new challenges, the chances are you will sometimes get it wrong – at least to begin with. But this isn’t a reason to shy away from giving it a go. Everyone who has achieved big things in their careers has made mistakes. This is simply part of the process, and it provides you with invaluable experience and an opportunity to learn important lessons for the future.

Focus on what you can do, not what you can’t

Never ever sell yourself short. Instead of focussing on the things you can’t do, think about all the skills you already have and those you’re in the process of developing. It might help to start a list of the capabilities you possess and the achievements you can claim – big and small,– and add to it as you acquire a new skill. It’s a simple way to see the range of qualities you already possess and how many you develop over time.

Don’t compare yourself to others

We all have role models who can help us to channel our ambitions and stay motivated. However, it’s important not to fall into the trap of continually comparing yourself to others to the extent that you end up feeling inadequate. Everyone is different, no one is perfect and even the most successful business people experience difficulties and doubts. By all means, take inspiration from others, but forge your own path that is defined by your own goals.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

While it’s important to define your own career goals and path, it’s also important to reach out for help when you need it. This is a skill that every successful business leader and entrepreneur has to perfect. Whether it’s asking for support from family and friends or seeking out mentors with expertise in your industry, or simply delegating tasks, having an effective support network in place is essential.

 

Chris Niarchos knows what it takes to overcome the fear of failure. As well as building a successful international business from scratch, he has earned respect through his talents on the racetrack. In this Dailysportscar interview with Chris Niarchos, he suggested he used to be an “awful racer”. But through perseverance, he went on to achieve impressive results before retiring from the track many years ago.

 

4 essentials for a fulfilling career

We all want to enjoy our work and to find roles that use and develop our talents and enable us to be the best that we can be. But what exactly makes for a fulfilling career? Based on my own experiences in business, here are four things that I believe play an essential part in making work rewarding.

1) Do something you love

Admittedly, this is sometimes easier said than done, but too often, people end up in jobs that they have no real interest in or, worse still, they actively dislike. The most successful and fulfilling careers come from being passionate about what you do. And it’s worth bearing in mind that there’s no need to let a lack of experience or qualifications stop you from pursuing your dreams. Look for roles in your area of interest that offer training and development opportunities.

Take Lawrence Lenzi, a successful business owner in the Appco UK network and the latest winner of the Marketing Company of the Year award: in his blog, he admits that when he started in the business he was “terrible” at sales! I’m enormously proud of the fact that the global Appco Group network is built on developing people’s professional and personal skills so they can pursue the career they want.

UK field representative Sophie Kola is benefitting from the Appco model in a different way. She’s using the flexibility of being self-employed to complete her studies, which is fantastic. Whatever you do, pursuing a line of work that you are passionate about is the first step towards enjoying a fulfilling career.

2) Stretch yourself

Taking on new challenges at work can be daunting and it’s much easier to remain within your comfort zone, focussing on tasks that you feel confident and comfortable doing. But, while it may seem safe and appealing in the short term, failing to stretch yourself can in fact lead to dissatisfaction. You may end up feeling bored in your role and you might struggle to achieve the level of success you’re striving for. Rather than shying away from testing situations, it pays off to embrace them. This will help you to build on your skill set, increase your confidence and fulfil your potential.

3) Be the master of your own destiny

Whether you are employed, self-employed or running your own business, you are the one who controls your ultimate career path and success. If you do set up in business for yourself you may have more freedom to pursue your own ideas and reap the full rewards of your success, but no matter what type of role you are in, never lose site of your goals. And remember, establishing your own company can be hugely rewarding, but it does require considerable effort, dedication and the ability to enable others to pursue the dreams!

4) Make a difference

A major contributor to a fulfilling career is the belief that the work you do makes a positive difference to the people around you. For example, being proud of the products or services that your company offers or that you represent makes it easier to show up every day and contribute to their production or promotion. And, speaking from experience, nurturing talent within your organisation and seeing others flourish is incredibly satisfying. On a more personal level, your job may help you to look after your loved ones, which I believe is just as – if not more so – rewarding as any professional or financial success.

 

With decades of experience as a business leader, Chris Niarchos knows exactly what it takes to build a successful career. As well as honing his skills as an entrepreneur, he has achieved considerable success on the race track. You can find out more about this, and get Chris Niarchos’ statistics, on the FIA GT Championship website.

 

4 traits of a successful leader

Many of us can and will succeed in the business world, but it takes a certain kind of individual to be a truly successful leader. Following are four of the traits that I have found the most successful and respected leaders and entrepreneurs tend to have in common. Read more

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