Are you frustrated by employees or associates whose work or efforts are not to your standards, level of passion or competency? Is this causing you to feel as though you are the only one that can get things done right? Nothing is more disheartening for a high achiever, and especially a business owner, than feeling as though no one can do it exactly like you.
The dilemma is that as you take on more and more in order to accomplish more and more, you are actually crippling your ability to achieve the things you have set out to accomplish. No one can do it all alone. To grow a business, people are necessary in every facet beyond you. While you may be exceptional in many ways, a desire to replicate yourself is actually short-sighted in what is needed to realize next-level success. The key is to understand how people can be engaged in a way that complements you and empowers your business.
1. Capacity Building: Increasing your business' capacity to do more means knowing what support you really need to increase your effectiveness. If your skills or expertise are the main offering of the business, growing capacity initially must come from team members who are adept at supporting functions of your business operations so you can better focus and deliver your best work. Too often, business owners are continuously distracted by operational tasks that diminish their ability to complete the higher level deliverables.
2. Competency Building: I have heard countless times from employees that they wish they could get inside the owner's or manager's head to get the answers needed. And herein lies your greatest ability to build competency in your business. Take what is in your head and document that unique procedure, process, or protocol. Take the time to reinforce understanding and you will find its execution becomes more seamless through team effort.
3. Charisma Building: For your passion to be contagious, it must first be understood. Once understood, coupled with a purpose-driven vision of the future, passion can inspire ideas, activity and allegiance to grow the company beyond what is humanly possible alone. A feeling and sense of purpose is the underlying ignition to fostering passion.
4. Confidence Building: If you are viewed as the only one who can provide answers to customers or can do the work, then you are unconsciously telling them that no one else in your company can effectively help. Empowering employees to be proactive, resourceful and capable in serving customers increases confidence in the company as a whole, as well as increases confidence of those working for you that they are also making a difference in the work that they do.
5. Capital Building: Whether you are seeking investors or seeking to increase value in your business for its potential sale, your ability to leverage people effectively in providing the company’s services and products beyond you is critical to proving the business is a viable entity without you. Don't let your own ego get in the way of building sound and seamless operations.
Instead of being overwhelmed because you feel the weight of responsibility in getting it all done, embrace it as a golden opportunity to expand your business capacity, competency, and the charisma of its people, which will lead to marketplace confidence and a business of value. Engaging others in ways that they can best engage with you will be setting yourself up to replicate success instead of merely replicating you.
Sherré DeMao is author of the nationally acclaimed books, 50 Marketing Secrets of Growth Companies in Down Economic Times, www.50marketingsecrets.com, and Me, Myself & Inc., www.memyselfandinc.com, Her column seeks to help business owners build and grow sustainable enterprises and businesses with economic value and preference in the marketplace.