- Do you have the uncomfortable feeling you are missing something in running your company?
- Is your growth slow and painful?
- Are you working more hours for much less revenue?
- Do you wake up in the morning nervous and uptight?
Being an entrepreneur does not have to be like this! Faster easier better results are possible!
As I interview startup CEOs and ask them what they are doing as CEOs to grow their company, they tell me:
- A long detailed list of actions about his product.
- A blank stare and long silence.
- “Can’t do anything until we get funding.”
- “My business has been crushed—don’t know what to do next.”
- “I am ready to work with a designer now, to get my ideas on paper.”
When I spoke on an expert panel for entrepreneurs, not one CEO in the audience asked about leadership! All questions were financial and legal. I had to piggyback on others’ answers to make sure leadership had a voice. What You Say Is What You Get®, and what you don’t say often reveals what you don’t know!
What does this tell us? Not one of these CEOs has a true CEO identity. They think of themselves as functional experts or creators of new products/services rather than as CEOs. Not one mentioned having an overall plan, past the funding business plan. Not one expressed any concern about how to get the right people on their leadership team, delegating well, or what business values/culture they wanted. One bemoaned being cheated by a former unethical partner, but had no plans to prevent this happening again.
Why is this costly? Your entire business derives from your identity as a CEO—or lack thereof.
One client CEO was fussing about taking money from his mother. He was acting like a son, not a CEO. I told him very definitively, “You are not a son taking money from your mother. You are a CEO who has made a financial policy decision about the best source of funding for your company!”
The shock on his face rippled through his whole body. His face re-arranged itself completely. His voice changed. He stood taller. His identity shifted in that one moment…he became a CEO instead of an expert with a great idea. When we started working together he was exhausted, pulled away by emotional and unconstructive family issues. In my “Build on Your Best” approach, we focused on his strengths and greatness as the basis for his leadership. At the end of our 5-month contract, he was energetic and absolutely laser-focused on his business and CEO identity.
Why Focus on Your CEO Identity?
Your CEO identity, based on your strengths and greatness, is the key driver of your business activities and thus your success.
As a CEO you will not only think about funding and sales but will be asking yourself:
How good a planner am I?
How well do I choose leadership team members?
How well do I delegate?
How skilled am I at building a great team?
How great are my communication skills as a CEO?
What is my vision for my company?
How inspirational am I as a leader?
How can I qualify team members for best results?
Do you know how to access your strengths and greatness and those of your team members for faster better easier results?
These are the skills most entrepreneur CEOs don’t know they don’t know. These questions I don’t hear CEOs asking. But they should be!
Do you realize that investors’, angels’ and others’ due diligence always includes management team functioning? An investor I know is pulling out a CEO and replacing him because he has poor leadership skills and is a “pain” to deal with. Do you want this?
Learn from these CEOs’ mistakes. Ramp up your leadership skills now, based on knowing and applying your strengths and greatness, to lower your risks and increase your revenue.
“When you don’t know your best, you have only half the truth, the worst half.”
– Dr. Linne’s Power Quote, from What You Say Is What You Get®-The Secret Language of Great Business Result
This article is one item under Dr. Bourget’s What You Say Is What You Get® Trademarked Positive Leadership Series of 40 Positive Leadership books, e-books, audios and articles at www.whatyousayiswhatyouget.com and www.youpublish.com/whatyousayiswhatyouget