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Cabarrus Magazine

6 Steps to Success from Chief Employee to Chief Executive

Aug 26, 2016 03:55PM ● By Melanie Heisinger

Own and run a business? If so, you know the feeling of being pulled in a thousand ways all at once. Since you are at the top of the organization, the natural result is that everything needs to come through you, be handled by you, decided by you, and resolved by you. Unhappy customer? Get ready. Commit to a certain price? It’s on you. Hire or fire? All yours.

What may have sounded like a good thing at first (working for yourself) can quickly become an overwhelming avalanche of responsibilities, large and small. It can suck the passion out of you, and leave you dreaming of the ‘good old days’ of ‘just drawing a paycheck’.

For most of us, going into business for ourselves is meant to be a game changer, the good kind not the bad. But the needs of the business must be met, and minutia creeps in on you like kudzu in the south, zapping your energy, keeping your head down so much that you can’t get to the things that will really move the business forward, and postponing the upside you were looking forward to. Instead of being the Chief Executive of your business, you are the Chief Employee.

It’s all too common, and it’s a primary reason why small businesses end up staying, well…small.

So what is to be done? How can you make the transition from Chief Employee to Chief Executive?

Here are six key steps to follow:

1.     Know what you want, and when you want it. A Chief Employee is normally too deep into the day-to-day issues to step back and think about the future. A Chief Executive knows it is up to them to define the future they want, what that means to then, and when certain goals are to be met.

2.     Write it down! If it isn’t written down, it isn’t real, and you can’t hold yourself accountable to it. A Chief Employee commits to their future by being able to articulate it to their team in specific and meaningful terms.

3.     Be honest about where you are now. Hope is not a strategy! Take a good, hard look at the gap between where you are and where you want to be. A Chief Executive takes off the rose-colored glasses, and determines whether or not they are willing to do what is necessary to succeed.

4.     Recognize that you will need to change. If what you were doing was working, you would already be there! As the Chief Executive, you know that change is inevitable, and you may need it most!

5.     Create a roadmap to follow, and actually follow it! This is the real purpose of a business plan: to identify in advance what it will take to achieve your goals. Your roadmap guides you and keeps you focused.

6.     Be accountable to someone. Plans are great, but only if they are carried out! Most of us get distracted, lose our focus, and drift away from our plan. Accountability is the key to staying on track! A Chief Executive is willing to be vulnerable, and gives someone the permission to ask the tough questions on a regular basis. We all make mistakes. Fess up, make the corrections and move on! Your accountability partner or group helps you do just that!

 By Warren Williams, President of TurningPoint Coaching 

TurningPoint Coaching for Business Performance Inc - Concord NC

TurningPoint Coaching for Business Performance, Inc.

Every business, no matter how small, has the potential to be great. The road to greatness is full of turning points, of opportunities and challenges. Each turning point provides a chance ... Read More » 

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