The success of a business depends significantly on how effective the owner is. Being effective as an owner is a challenge because the owner usually fulfills several other roles, such as being the salesperson or production manager.
What does the business need from the owner, regardless of what else the owner is doing? I believe these four qualities are crucial:
Why does the business exist? Why did the owner start the business? Often, no one who works there knows. The backstory informs the mission and core values of the business. Those are the basis for decision-making by all who work there.
To be successful, a business needs the owner to define and codify why the business was started, what will make it successful, and what the points of reference are for all who work there. Those principles need to be preached forever.
Running a small business involves dealing with a lot of situations one never expected to encounter. Hiring and firing employees is never high on the list of reasons why someone starts a business. Collecting payments from clients who are not 100% pleased is low on that list, too.
The business owner must work through all these issues to be successful. Fact is, getting good at something one doesn’t really want to do often makes one a better business person.
An owner usually cannot depend on employees holding him accountable. So how does an owner get the unattractive stuff done? How does an owner get done what will get done only if he does it?
The answer is: Be disciplined. Walking the walk is the best way an owner can focus on results and demonstrate to employees the behavior expected. Only by doing all that he is supposed to do, and getting it done when it is supposed to be done, can the owner raise the level of discipline throughout the entire company.
When a business is created, the owner does not have to be good at delegating because he might be the only person in it. With success comes employees and the need to delegate.
Most business owners need to learn how to do this well. Typically, their initial efforts are learning experiences that come at the expense of profits and success. Only by acknowledging his inability to delegate effectively and taking steps to get better at it can the owner make his business, his employees, and the business’s clients feel successful working together.
Keep the 4 Ds in mind when doing anything every day that you are working in and on your business. Doing so, you will experience joy and satisfaction plus profits, a nice combination. Enjoy taking the profits to the bank while your employees make more money for you.