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Why is Leadership So Hard?

Welcome to this episode, where we dive into the challenges of leadership in small businesses. During my recent travels and interactions with small business owners and entrepreneurs, a recurring theme emerged in our conversations. Many business owners approached me, seeking advice on the difficulties they face in leading their organizations. It struck me how prevalent this question was: Why is it so hard to lead in our small businesses? Let's explore why this challenge exists and recognize that while you excel in your area of expertise, there is little formal training available on leading in the context of a small business. So, join me as we delve into this important topic and uncover valuable insights along the way.

Figuring out people and learning how different people handle relationships and anxiety were the things that prompted my interest in psychology, which led me to get a Ph.D. in counseling psychology. I wanted to help people with their challenges—and I still do. It is perfectly normal to struggle with learning to lead, but it is SO important on many levels. Your leadership and your ability to build a team and delegate impact your profitable revenue and growth. In Episode 238, I did a deep dive into getting out of your own way to be profitable in your business; go back and listen to learn more. That episode ties into today’s topic because learning to lead in your small business is the key to your profitability and freeing up your time so you can take your life back.

Profit by Design is a Tap the Potential Production.

Show Highlights:

  • How I handled growing pains in my business in the early years when I faced a capacity issue and needed to hire someone to help

  • How to address the gaps and blind spots when you are pulled in multiple directions (This happens as you go from the “selling and doing” phase to the “hiring and leading” phase.)

  • How having systems in place can keep us from going down the slippery slope of self-doubt

  • Why your focus has to shift from doing ALL the client-facing delivery and selling to growing leaders from your team members

  • How having the wrong “warm bodies” in your business will multiply your leadership problems and deplete your confidence

  • Are you on the slippery slope of doubting your leadership? Look at the quality of the people you are trying to lead.

  • How A-players will give honest feedback about your leadership–without the sting

  • Other factors that make leadership hard in a small business:

  • How a coach/mentor can help broaden your limited perspective with valuable feedback

  • How taking care of yourself with exercise, good sleep, meditation, and journaling can help you let go of leadership mistakes and improve your success

Links and Resources:

I’m looking for 150 entrepreneurs who are ready to commit to taking a 4 Week Vacation. If that’s you, email me

Tell me you are making the 4 Week Vacation Pledge, your target date, and why it’s important to you.

The Better Business Better Life Jumpstart begins May 15, and there will be another jumpstart in June. This free, live workshop runs for one hour each day during the week and will change your mindset about your business and set you on the course for exploding your profitable revenue! Sign up today!

Let us help you and your business! Book a call with us today!

Join our Mighty Networks Community for extra support and resources!

Learn more about our Breakthroughs Retreat scheduled for March 2024!

Let us help you manage your time, your most valuable resource! Get your FREE copy of the Tap the Potential Strategic

Planner for 2023 at

Download Dr. Sabrina’s Introductory Training: How to Make Your Time Worth $10,000 an Hour

Think beyond Employee Appreciation. Check out Leadership Boot Camp today!

Download our Workbook and take our Better Business Better Life Assessment.

New! Now Available!! The 4 Week Vacation book with bonuses! Follow the steps to claim your spot for the upcoming live training, The 4 Week Vacation Better Business Better Life Jumpstart!


About The Author

Dr. Sabrina Starling, The Business Psychologist and international best-selling author of the How to Hire the Best series and The 4 Week Vacation™, is the founder of Tap the Potential and host of the Profit by Design podcast. At Tap the Potential, we work to free business owners from the constant demands of a growing business.

We believe work supports life, not the other way around. Clients in our Better Business, Better Life coaching program have more time for what matters most and more money in their bank account than they’ve ever had. Next, we send them off on a 4 Week Vacation™ to celebrate their hard-earned journey to take their life back!

Dr. Sabrina and her team at Tap the Potential are on a mission to change the story of entrepreneurship from one of long hours, grinding it out, to one of sustainably profitable businesses that support and enhance life. The Tap the Potential Solution™ and our Tap the Potential Family of Business Owners are disrupting small business as usual. We are on our way to making the Tap the Potential Solution™ the mainstream model for growing business.

By 2023, 150 Tap the Potential clients will have taken 4 Week Vacations. These are the trailblazers, role modeling what’s possible for entrepreneurs. In many entrepreneurial circles, it is becoming more and more common for one entrepreneur to ask another, “Have you taken a 4 Week Vacation™?” (as opposed to asking “How many employees do you have?” or “What is your annual revenue?”). Taking a fully unplugged 4 Week Vacation is rapidly becoming the recognized symbol of entrepreneurial success.

Never one to accept the status quo or back down from a challenge, Dr. Sabrina’s How to Hire the Best series grew from her desire to solve the toughest hiring challenges interfering with her clients’ growth and profitability. What sprang from her experience working with entrepreneurs in rural areas catapulted her into becoming the world’s leading expert in attracting top talent in small businesses—no matter what hiring challenges those businesses are facing—and earned Tap the Potential’s reputation as the go-to resource for entrepreneurs committed to creating Great Places to Work with thriving coaching cultures and highly engaged team members working from strengths.

As The Business Psychologist, and with her years of driving profit in small businesses, Dr. Sabrina knows what it takes to find, keep, and motivate exceptional performance out of your biggest investment—team members.