Be A Better CEO! | Learning When To Say NO

This week I want to talk to you about one of your greatest strengths that could be turning into one of your biggest weaknesses, costing you time, money, energy, and frustration.

As the CEO of a fast-growing business, you know that there’s no end to the demands upon your time, right?  It’s busy and you’re getting pulled in a lot of different directions.

But how do you get to such a level of busy-ness?

It comes down to one of your greatest strengths that’s turning into a weakness, and that strength is the ability to bite off more than you can chew… and then chew like crazy.

In other words, you say “yes” to opportunity and, no matter what happens, you figure out how to deal with it.

Why would we do that?  That sounds a bit stressful, doesn’t it?  Or maybe fun? 

Well, it starts out when we’re founders.  We’re trying to get the business off the ground.  We say yes to whatever opportunity comes our way because we need the business and we get rewarded for it.  We get more and more business and we grow, and we think, “Hey, I just need to thrive in this chaos and to keep saying yes to… pretty much everything.”

And that’s great because we do get the business off the ground, but we get to a point where we hit a plateau.  That’s where that strength of being able to handle a lot on our plate becomes a weakness, because we continually overcommit and we’re not moving the business forward anymore.

We’re spinning our wheels and running in circles.

So we have to ask ourself,
what is the job of the CEO?

It’s a couple things.  The one is, to predict the future a little bit.

We need to be looking down the track and figuring out where does the business need to be?  It’s like Wayne Gretzky said way back when.  He said, “I don’t skate to where the puck is, I skate to where the puck is going.”  And that’s part of your role as a CEO is to predict, where is your industry going?  What’s happening with that competitive landscape?  What does your target market looking for now and in the future?  What’s going on with the talent pool?

We’ve got to be looking outward and predictive.  So that’s job one.

The next is, we need to have a plan in place to make sure that we’re taking action towards being where we need to be, which means we need to be not only having that plan but driving execution and accountability for that execution down to the team.

So now, when we’re looking outward and we’re planning and forecasting, we’re not going to have the time for all the day-to-day stuff, and that’s what we have to figure out.  What do we need to get off our plate?  And that answer is different for everybody.

For you, give some thought to what are some of the things that you find yourself wrapped up in during the week and you just wonder “Why am I doing this?”  Maybe you’re an engineer and you’re still doing some engineering.  Or maybe you’re the top salesman in your company still.

There’s things that you’re doing that are tactical, that are day-to-day, that need to get off your plate so you can focus on the big picture: those strategic initiatives that are going to drive your business forward.

If that’s a challenge for you or you’re not sure where to start with how to get out from all that day to day, connect with me.

I help business owners do that all the time to get back on top of their business, get back into growth mode, get un-stalled, get unstuck, and get moving forward in accelerating the scaling of their business.

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