In the autumn of 2019, I talked to 26 successful pioneers, in UK, Uganda and Dubai, a combination of entrepreneurs, charity leaders and authors, about their experience of leadership. I defined pioneers as people who are the first to do things. To use Peter Thiel’s term in his book “Zero to One”, they are “building the future”. I wanted to understand what influenced their pioneering mindset, whether this led to a unique set of leadership challenges and how they tackled those challenges. I wanted to learn something which could help other pioneers to be more effective leaders, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa where I spend much of my time and where effective entrepreneurship is a critical component to economic development.