Leadership

7 Lessons in Leadership From the Dogs of the Westminster Dog Show

7 Lessons in Leadership From the Dogs of the Westminster Dog Show
Image credit: Wendy Frink
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Dogs of all shapes and sizes have gathered in New York City this week for the 139th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. Over the next two days, the best of the best will battle it out to become “Best in Show.”

Yes, these pups lead pampered lives and take cues from their owners, but they still know a thing or two about going for gold. And in that way, they share more in common with entrepreneurs than you might realize.

Here’s how:  

1. They get up early

Most dogs would rather be on the couch with a snackie and a warm blanket, but that certainly won’t win championships. With judging set to begin at 8:30 a.m., these dogs know the value of getting up before the competition.
More: The Power of Mornings: Why Successful Entrepreneurs Get up Early

2. They are media savvy

Camera-shy? Nope. These dogs know that you have to take an opportunity by the paw and nail it. They know that with each possible appearance is the chance to grow their brand, so they take it and have fun with it.
More: 5 Do's and Don'ts for Making the Most of a Television Appearance

3. They love outsourcing

Why do your own hair when you can pay someone else to do it for you? This frees you to concentrate on the more important things, like sales, marketing, or deciding where to take your next nap.
More: To Outsource or Not? That Is the Question.

4. They know the power of a good nap


These shows dogs work a lot -- endless competitions, cross-country drives, posing for the camera. Make like Fido and recharge with a quick nap so you can collect that next blue ribbon.
More: Why You Should Learn to Nap Like a Pro

5. They know how to stand out

To the naked eye, these pugs may all look alike, but there are subtle differences that will stand out to the judge. As an entrepreneur, you must find out what makes your business unique and use that to crush the competition.
More: Stand Out From the Crowd: 3 Ways to Put a Spotlight on Your Company

6. They know the power of comedy

Whether they mean to or not, dogs are hilarious. Humor serves these pups well in competition and makes them super approachable. Try cracking a joke the next time a stressful situation arises. It will diffuse the situation and calm everyone’s nerves.
More: Humor Them. A Well-Timed Laugh Speaks Volumes.

7. They learn from failure and move on

While Westminster may be on the bucket list for many show dogs, losing isn’t the end of the world. These pups will walk proudly away from the ring, learn a few things, take it to the next competition and never look back. Or, they’ll just curl up for nap.
More: Failure Is the Seed of Growth and Success