It’s not that answering the phone is wrong and creating a company outline is right. I mean, if you don’t answer the phone you can’t get new business. And it’s not that sales and marketing is the right work and customer service is the wrong work. It all impacts your bottom line.
But when it comes to leadership, when it comes to the owner of the business, it’s about consistently doing what needs to be done for the long term health of the company. It’s about starting that work — today.
But, what are you spending your time doing?
Are you answering the phone all day, when a smart and friendly receptionist could do it better? Are you waiting the tables when an attentive waitress could have greater impact?
I’ve seen small business owners with creative and effective solutions doing the wrong job and running potential clients away. And I bet you have too:
- What about the distracted owner at the front desk who tries to do so many things, too many things at once, and they end up leaving potential clients on the phone a little too long?
- Or the hoverer, the owner who lingers. When they’re around, you can’t shop in peace or get a little privacy at the restaurant table. They are in the middle of your entire conversation and you find yourself going their less and less?
Don’t get me wrong, you need to come face to face with your clients so that you can understand what they really need and want from you. But then you have to make room for the rest of it.
The owner holds the business in their heart.
They identify and develop the big picture strategy. They attract and lead the team. They give a deeper meaning to the daily grind and details of the business. It’s the work that can’t be handed off without loosing some of the essence of the company and that’s what makes it the right work for the small business owner.
To be effective for the long haul, you have to make room for the strategy work. There has to be time to be still and think some things through. Time to rework the way you do what you do. Time to retest the status quo and make changes when necessary.
The right work for the leader is the strategy work.
And when you consistently do strategy work – it’s easier for innovation to become an ongoing part of your business.
Annoyed  Photo via Shutterstock