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WHAT YOU FEEL: you are frustrated with doing everything and with customers and employees

PERSPECTIVE: It is one thing to lose perspective for a moment and another to hold beliefs that are detrimental to your company.  There are certain things that you cannot say, and more importantly, cannot believe.  If you do believe these things, you are operating with a flawed understanding about what makes a business successful.  Here are a few and what people think when you say these things or hold these beliefs:

  • I’m the only one that can perform these functions.
    Translation: this is an inexperienced leader that doesn’t know how to run or grow a business.  Every business has individuals that have more knowledge about a subject area and could dive into each and every situation.  If you are setting up your organization in a way that requires your ownership of too much, you will never grow.  A good leader will bring in the people, train them and delegate because he or she knows what’s most important.  Your goal should be if you get hit by a bus, your organization should still be able to function and thrive.

  • We can’t set priorities – we have to do it all.
    Translation: this is an inexperienced leader that doesn’t know how to run or grow a business.  Every business has more to do than it has time.  Nonetheless, it is even more important in an environment of scarce resources to set priorities.  Not setting priorities creates a constant chaos and causes the organization to underperform.

  • We don’t have any competition.
    Translation: this is an inexperienced leader that doesn’t appreciate the competitive marketplace and whose perspective may make it difficult to succeed.  Everyone has competition.  Oil companies can be software companies in a matter of months.  With the advent of technology and the worldwide economy, creating a competitive product can happen anywhere, anytime.  Some argue if a business model is already out there, it is too late.  Competition comes from everywhere in this day and age.  Investors view leaders that don’t think competition exists as immature and inexperienced.  On he other hand, investors look at leaders that acknowledge and embrace competition, and focus on overcoming it, as leadership.

  • Our competitors will never be able to do that.
    Translation: our passion for our business is clouding leadership’s judgment.  Your perspective on competition should be that you expect they can copy and improve on what you do at a moment’s notice.  Assume they have more capital and better people.  Challenge your team to embrace competition as an opportunity to strive and learn.

  • It’s good that Steve is leaving. He was not that good anyway.  Translation: the company does not value people and is only in the business of advancing people if it serves their need.  Speaking ill of individuals that leave the organization sends the message that individuals are not valued and that the organization lacks respect for people.

  • Our customers are clueless.
    Translation: the company does not understand the primary role that customers play in your success.  Your customer’s success is your success.  If your perspective is anything other than creating success for your customer, you are likely to fail.

You cannot believe these things.  You cannot say these things.  You also must quash anyone in the organization who has these views.  It is worth your time to talk to employees about perspectives like this as they can be debilitating to both the culture and the success of the company.

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