Recently, I have had a number of conversations with private coaching clients and Accelerator members who all seem to have forgotten that they are the boss of their companies. I have listened as these women have explained their challenges, often with team members or vendors, where expectations haven’t been met, deadlines have been missed, or work has been sloppy or gone unfinished. After they describe the problem and wonder both how they wound up here and what to do in order to fix it, I remind them of one simple thing.
YOU ARE THE BOSS!!!
As the boss, if a team member or vendor hasn’t met the demands of the job, it is vital to assess whether the expectations were communicated clearly from the beginning. Were metrics established up front and did everyone understand them? And, now that things have gone off the rails, how are you going to communicate your dissatisfaction—and create processes to make sure this doesn’t happen again?
Often, as we begin to scale our companies and build capacity, we make the mistake of assuming that everything is suddenly going to run on its own. Believe me, it won’t. Building a team is not a finite event. It is a continuous and dynamic process. Thinking you’ve done your job by hiring or outsourcing is a mistake. That is only the first step.
The journey is the ongoing job of managing. Managing workloads, managing people, managing clients, managing vendors, managing all of the little details that only you see as the business owner.
I even had one client admit with exasperation, “I just don’t know how to move forward with all of this.” And you know what I told her? You are going to manage your way out of this. You are the owner of this company. It is up to you to lead. Be clear about what you want, give your team the tools they need to complete their jobs, and then hold everyone, including yourself, accountable. It’s not that any single task is insurmountable. It’s that the sum of the challenges seems overwhelming. The only way to move forward in that situation is to just put one foot in front of the other. Sometimes being the grown up—being the leader—is hard. It is not a one and done situation. It is an ongoing responsibility.
But you are up for the challenge. I know it.