Want to Lead? Learn to Serve

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – As director of women and youth entrepreneurship programs at the Youngstown Business Incubator, Stephanie Gilchrist has worked with dozens, if not hundreds, of entrepreneurs.

Although many are first-time entrepreneurs, and some are as young as nine years old, Gilchrist says her job as a leader isn’t to tell them what to do; it’s to be a servant.

“I believe that is the best way and really the only true way to lead anyone,” she says.

“How can I help you grow and become better as a businessperson in your business model? What can I do? That’s always been my approach.”

During her time at YBI, Gilchrist says she’s helped entrepreneurs to solve a variety of problems and watched them make countless mistakes.

One mistake, which she admits struggling with herself, is being unable to ask for help.

“What I learned in running a nonprofit and even in the role I’m in right now is to say I need help,” Gilchrist says.

Gilchrist spoke with Youngstown Publishing Company CEO Jeff Leo Herrmann during a recent episode of the Brain Gain Youngstown Leadership Podcast series.

Here are key takeaways:

 Learn to delegate. You can’t do everything.

 Think outside the box when problem solving.

 Form partnerships to compensate for your weaknesses.

 Take action.

“That’s what entrepreneurship is, ‘Let’s solve the problem,’ ” said Gilchrist.

“Let’s just get behind it and start doing the work.”

The Brain Gain Youngstown Leadership Podcast is published every Wednesday at BusinessJournalDaily.com and on Spotify.