In our last blog post, we asked the question: “Are You Happy Being A CEO?” After identifying the most common areas that CEOs struggle with – cash flow, process and losing a key client or team member – we touched upon one of the very best ways to address these challenges and increase your happiness. Namely, it’s your team that can pull you through the dark days. It’s your team that you can celebrate the wins with. Even if you’re a company of one person, a team of resources around you is invaluable to your happiness and success. Because when your team is in harmony, you’re happiest being a CEO.
As CEO, you’re wearing a lot of “hats” of responsibility, so as you come around to the idea of delegating more and maximizing your team…how do you know which hats to take off?
Working ON Your Business
Instead Of IN Your Business
By wearing so many hats, it’s easy to get off balance and trip. When your obligations get out of control, other aspects can suffer. Clients don’t get the full focus they deserve, your team starts to lose focus or your financials begin to slip. It’s often described as the difference between “working ON your business instead of working IN your business.”
There comes a time when you have to “graduate” yourself and have to work on those issues that can elevate your business. Otherwise, you will stagnate or worse, take a step back or two in your growth.
How do you do that? In a word: Delegation.
Delegating isn’t something that most CEOs automatically embrace. In fact, the very first time you do it, it’s pretty freaking hard. There will be times when you’ll say, “I could get this done faster if I just do it myself.” You hear that inner voice regularly the first few times you delegate, and in reality it probably will take longer. But investing that time now will pay dividends of time in the future.
As part of your hiring strategy, how do you identify the best people to handle the work and trust them? As CEO, your job is growing the business and maintaining the vision. Therefore, you will have to remind yourself that while there are certain things you can do personally, these may be the very same things for the good of the business you can’t do and should be delegated to others on your team – whether internally or outsourced. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. This takes an enormous amount of discipline but it does get easier over time.
The Signs Of When You’re “Ready To Remove”
So you’re on board with hiring people and delegating to them. Before long, you have a room full of people who are helping you deliver. That’s great! But even now, there are still plenty of C-suite hats, including Marketing and Sales, HR, I.T., Finance, Operations, Strategy and more. That’s fine until you start neglecting some hats in favor of others. This throws a lot of things off in a hurry, which is sign #1 that you should be ready to remove some hats. We all only want to work close to “normal” business hours, so how do you rebalance?
Next, think about “reallocating the pie” of your responsibilities: Which piece is biggest? Which hat do you like most? What takes the most time? As you consider this redistribution act, it’s important to have an eye toward surrounding yourself with people who are smarter than you (and specialized in that field) so that you can destroy the “I have to do it myself” myth once and for all. If they’re smarter than you in a particular area, they often do it better than you could.
When you’re doing it right, your revenue goes up. Your revenue climbs, leading to greater profit, more money and more options. When you have greater profit, you can make choices about how you’re going to spend it, including reinvesting in your company.
How do you start reinvesting? By outsourcing anything you’re not great at or don’t like to do, yet it’s something your company needs. It’s just that you shouldn’t be the one doing it.
We’ll use ourselves at Officeheads as a good example. We first outsourced our I.T. We’d managed along with a “break-fix” model of doing things for a long time, but if our computers went down, what would we do? So, instead of the CEO crawling under desks to set up new computers, we outsourced to true experts to handle all areas of our technological setup and maintenance. Next, we outsourced our Marketing. We needed experts with skills in social media, websites, email marketing and more. We then outsourced the HR function through a consultant and recruiter for building our staff where needed.
This was our particular set of outsourcing needs. Yours may be different. However, when it comes to outsourcing, we encourage you to follow an Outsourced Choice Checklist:
- Am I passionate about doing this myself?
- Do I know people who are better at handling this than me?
- Do I have the money to hire the kind of person/team I want?
- If I do wind up doing it myself, am I charging enough internally to do that (probably not)?
If a hat is absorbing way too much of your valuable time and energy, it’s time to seriously consider taking that hat off for good. That includes the financial hat, which Officeheads specializes in. You’ll realize a greater sense of balance, happiness and like many of our clients, wonder why you didn’t do it sooner. There’s no time like the present to get started, so give Officeheads a call today at 847.866.8877.