As much time as I spend coaching and training business owners, I never have to look too far to find certain things that many of us are not doing to maximize our time. Last week I talked about the fact that time management is a myth and I believe that to be true. Since many people can’t really get their heads around that concept, I wanted to take a little bit of a different angle for you today.
Owners and top leaders get to where they are in the companies we all run by say yes to most things. We achieve certain levels of success by being the “head cook and bottle washer”. Many of us begin in the field and our service truck becomes our office. We answer phones, price jobs, do the installation of our products and services, get home late and night and begin the bookkeeping job.
Most of the time, as our companies grow we begin to surround ourselves with people like us and attempt to train them into positions in the way we would do certain things. This is NOT the most effective way to grow companies. Certainly we know what needs to get done, but all too often we don’t design systems in our companies that allow us to keep checks and balances in place as we work to free ourselves from certain tasks.
We need to get better at delegation along with measuring and reporting
systems so we know if and when something becomes broken with the system
or within our companies. I’m not saying this is easy to do, but
it’s very necessary to do in order to create growth, income and
freedom. We all work very hard, but we can work on smarter tasks in most cases.
You can create a personality centric company, or a systems centric company. If you don’t make a conscious choice every single day to create a systems centric company, then you will be sure to end up personality centric. People are incredibly important to our companies and I’m not saying we don’t need well trained, dedicated team members, but you don’t need to be at the center of all the decisions in your business.
Begin to realize that you can still have choices and decisions made by leaders in your business within the scope of what you would choose yourself but you don’t have to make every decision. You just have to create a decision making criteria for them to make good choices that best benefit the company. This is one of the biggest growth obstacles in small business. Not creating decision making systems which create the need for owners to be involved in every little detail.
Once you create the system, you must empower the team member that run that department or portion of your business to begin making decisions on the company’s behalf. This is when you must transfer responsibility to the team member, review and coach decisions made to make sure you’re on the right track. Then with good reporting and accountability, you can utilize your time on things that GROW the business, not simply sustain it.