One of the most common questions a business owner asks when reflecting on his/her company and its performance is whether he/she is too involved in the day to day dealings of the business. A very valid question. After all, when you started your company, you set out to build a business, not work for it. And the truth is that if you have asked yourself this question, the answer is ‘yes.’
That involvement, the neverending pursuit of excellent customer service, the non-stop tweaking of every marketing message and sales pitch, is what got your company to where it is today. But being overly involved in the day to day functions of your business could also be the reason why you are no longer growing as quickly as you once were. Not to mention the toll that operating in this fashion is likely taking on your personal life and your health.
While you may be too involved in the day to day dealings of your company, this is no reason to lose heart. Letting go isn’t easy, but if you want to continue growing your business, it is a necessity you are going to have to get used to.
Nobody Will Ever Do It Like You (At Least Not Completely)
The first hurdle you are going to have to overcome is resolving yourself to the fact that nobody else out there is going to do things exactly as you would. And that’s okay. First off, there is nobody else on this planet like you. Everyone will approach problems and opportunities in different ways. Secondly, the strongest teams are made up of individuals with different backgrounds, work experiences and ways of overcoming challenges. That diversity is essential to finding and implementing the best solutions. There are tons of talented people out there that can help you grow your business. Find the right ones and hire those people.
Hire Smart People
This all revolves around hiring smart people. You need to hire the smartest people you can possibly afford, in order to grow your company in the most optimized way. Too many times business owners get hung up on wanting to always be right or wanting to be the smartest person in the room. Some of the most successful companies on the planet were founded by people who knew they were nowhere near the smartest people in the room. Instead, those founders put together brilliant teams able to make their dreams a reality.
Hiring the most talented people you can find does require a little bit of courage and a fair amount of confidence. Again, you aren’t looking for a version of yourself. Hire people that complement your skillset. Hire people that are great at functions you need for your business that you are not great at. And most importantly, when you find those people, empower them to go out and excel in their positions. Let them do their jobs without getting in the way.
Be Prepared For Failure
Empowering people to go out there and get things done does have a downside. It all but guarantees that they will fail sometimes. Failing is a natural part of building any business. Failing means a team member tried and it simply didn’t work. What they take away and learn from that failure, and how you react to that failure, is going to be the difference between future successes and ultimate defeat.
You need to remember that your team members aren’t you. As a result, they aren’t going to go about things the exact way you would have. To set employees up for success, be very clear on your conditions for satisfaction – the outcomes you expect. And manage to those outcomes, not the way the person goes about getting there.
You also have to remember that team members are human, as are you, and that all humans make mistakes. Deal with a failure in a constructive way, possibly even sharing with your employee a failure of your own from the past. This will show them that you know there will be failures and that what’s really essential is how they respond and shift gears after the failure.
This approach will foster creativity, keep your employees pushing forward and help your business increase its bottom line.
It’s Never Easy, But It’s Necessary
Letting go so you can work “on” your company and not “in” it is never easy. The truth of the matter though, is that if you want to continue growing a long-lasting, profitable business, and one that operates effectively while you’re not present, it is something you absolutely have to do. Start taking the steps now to get back to building a business rather than working for it.