Working On Your Business (not in it)

When business owners say they are working harder than ever before and taking every hour that is given to produce their product or service, it often raises the question: is there another way to build a long term business? Do business owners always have to be involved in every part of production? It’s hard to image a day without picking up the tools and “doing something”. And as satisfying as it is to produce something in a day, it’s exhausting and time consuming.

Ultimately, there are really only two ways to approach the role of a business owner - to operate as a highly skilled employee or to operate as the leader. Employees work in a business to do what is required to produce a product or service. Leading on the other hand, takes a step away from all the ‘doing’ and begins from an altogether different standpoint.

How to work On a business

Taking a leap of faith to shift into leading existing staff is the first, and possibly most significant step of working on a business and not in a business. Business owners who have done so find themselves with time to develop and implement growth plans.

The first steps of freedom often involve working on developing personal leadership skills and mitigating those traits that are counterproductive. Educating oneself, taking courses, attending seminars, networking, absorbing the latest thinking and innovations that are in the marketplace. This stage of the process is to build the skills and knowledge that will underpin effective and worthwhile decisions.

Working on obtaining and retaining staff often follows. Being able to delegate successfully and hire the staff that can get the job done, and do it well, is an art form in and of itself. All businesses require a clear set of expectations for their staff. Once this is in place, retaining a great team may be to work on implementing a staff development and engagement program to inspire and further motivate.

Working On a business means being able to take a holistic view of all the different moving parts of a given business. Stepping back from the ‘doing’ in order to synchronise all the parts so that they operate at their optimum capacity.

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