What Entrepreneurs Can Learn from Wolves
In the wild, wolves are the epitome of strength, endurance and family bonds. You might even have an appreciation for them after seeing some of the awesome animation and effects work from the recent Twilight films. On a more serious note, wolves can teach entrepreneurs a lot about making it both as a “lone” wolf, and as part of a pack.
I. The strength of the pack is the wolf.
When dealing with clients, as a business, adopt the stance that you are helping them. That puts you in a position of strength. However, don’t abuse that power by acting arrogant, snobbish, selfish or self-centered. Although you are important, there are many other businesses in the world for clients to fish and choose from. Know your uniqueness, but respect differences.
Within a team (or pack), a good leader can dominate without patronizing or degrading others. Alpha male wolves are strong, invaluable leaders, but a pack is neither a democracy nor a dictatorship. In the words of Cesar Millan, be “calm and assertive,” and your balanced energy will garner respect. (Now, of course, there are different types of leaders for different types of situations. To learn more about this, check out Roger James Hamilton’s Wealth Dynamics Test.)
II. The strength of the wolf is the pack.
We are interdependent beings, meaning we all thrive on each others’ efforts – directly or indirectly. In a pack, individual wolves have low chances of survival without the help of their companions (especially in hunts). The same can be applied to entrepreneurs. If a project or business idea seems too big to handle, look at outsourcing to other fellows in your networks. This will not only help to complete things on time, but it will also help to build relationships.
We must not forget those around us, even if we feel we are working for ourselves initially.
III. Boundaries, Limits and Rules
This is a no-brainer. We all know that, in the wild, animals obey territorial rules, limitations and boundaries. We can apply this to business by educating our relations on what is expected when working together. We can also set boundaries by laying out contracts or terms of agreements, or we could simply post a Production Process page on our intranets or websites. Either way, be sure to lay down the rules and boundaries before starting on any work with a team.
IV. Know your role
The reasons why wolves work so well together is because each of them have a purpose – and they all know their roles within the pack. Although we could argue that entrepreneurs seem like lone wolves in terms of their “overnight successes”, if you dig a little deeper, you’ll find that their “packs” are wide and varied. From their friends and families, to mentors and colleagues, the pack does not necessarily need to be together <physically> in today’s day and age. So it would be best to come into these relationships with a “pack mentality,” evaluating each others’ roles and sticking to them throughout the duration of whatever endeavor you intend. This will, in turn, cause less headaches and promote more balance between entrepreneurs and their circles.