Some people are born leaders, while others naturally follow in a pack. It isn’t easy to be a natural-born leader stuck in a follower’s position at work, but it’s something that happens all too often. It takes an immense amount of courage and perseverance for a corporate employee to give up a steady position to build his own business, especially when he is of a particular race.
As much as most of the nation would like to believe that Black people are considered equals in the workplace, the statistics in corporate America prove otherwise. A USA Today analysis took a look at the 50 largest companies in the S&P 100 as of July 2020. Of the 279 top executives on the list, only five were Black, and two of those five had recently retired.
Most people who manage to stick a position in corporate America will hold onto it in hopes of climbing the ranks, and many of them feel it’s the best they can do. For some, however, the urge to break free from the pack is too great. Van Taylor is one of the few fearless risk-takers who took the plunge and left his corporate position to take his own entrepreneurial journey, and it was one of the best decisions he ever made.
Desire for Authenticity:
Taylor worked for ten years in corporate America, building health clubs to seven- and eight-figures. Still, he felt he couldn’t be his authentic self during that time or have the impact he was destined to have. In 2016 he’d finally had enough, so he “fired his boss” and vowed to use his expertise to help other people so that they would never have to live life by building other people’s dreams.
This determination to focus on his own dreams and legacy helped shape Van Taylor’s entrepreneurial spirit. He loves helping others live their truths, inspiring them, and teaching them how to monetize their expertise and passions.
Failures and Successes:
Taylor says his biggest pain and mistake was waiting so long to start building his brand. He lost his first marriage and has three damaged relationships with his older children due to his being a “slave to corporate America.” He learned the hard way never to let money or projects come before his relationships with his wife and children.
On the other hand, his biggest success so far is being able to “give back” in Africa. By building a profitable business, he can do philanthropy in Senegal and build a coding school there to help eradicate poverty.
Unique Management Style:
Taylor’s unique management style is a significant factor in his success. He believes in “leading from the front, not pushing from the back.” Showing employees how things are done, then empowering them to innovate and execute gives them a sense of purpose and gets them excited to work each day.
When hiring for his team, Taylor uses the D.I.S.C. assessment to evaluate personality types. The letters in the acronym stand for Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness. While everyone has a combination of styles within them, most people fall into one or two quadrants. Identifying a person’s main traits helps Van Taylor fit them into roles in which they can best thrive.
Taylor is proud to have overcome the stereotype of Black American males who end up either dead or in jail by the age of 25. Not only has he successfully built a brand and business that gives back to his community, but he also uses his philanthropy work to change the world.
Disclaimer: The Post Van Taylor’s Unique Management Style Is A Key Factor In His Success was first Published by Dickson on leadership.ng.