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Doing Your Thing vs. Being the CEO
Doing Your Thing vs. Being the CEO
Have you ever stopped to ask yourself, “If I were hiring a CEO, would I hire myself for the job?”
Are you doing what you were born to do? Each day when you wake up, are you doing “your thing” or has the responsibility of being the CEO forced you out of your sweet spot?
There are many reasons you took the plunge and started your own company. But regardless of the reason, you now find yourself in charge. Have you ever stopped to ask yourself, “If I were hiring a CEO, would I hire myself for the job?”
This is one of the classic entrepreneurial dilemmas. You started a company and so it’s your baby, but let’s face it, of all the reasons you had for starting your company, being the CEO was probably not high on that list. And sure, you’ve grown accustom to guiding your team, laying out strategies and solving the myriad of problems that crop up day in and day out. But is this truly the best use of your time? Is this truly what your company needs you to be doing? And is this your real passion?
That’s the real question. Because if you’re not passionate about being the CEO, it’s a good bet that getting back to what you are passionate about will invigorate your company, not to mention everyone around you.
Start By Identifying Your Personal SWOT
Perhaps the single best way to identify what you can and should be doing is to partake in your own personal SWOT analysis. What are your personal key strengths–inside and outside of the business you currently run?
What weaknesses do you have? Be honest. You don’t ever have to show this analysis to anyone else. If you’re not a numbers guy, fess up. If you’re rotten at sales, write it down. If you can’t stand publicity, that’s okay. The point is to be brutally honest with yourself so that you can figure out how to supplement what you’re not good at with someone (or a team) that balances out your weaknesses with their strengths in these areas.
Where are the opportunities for personal growth? Perhaps you don’t have a knack for managing the numbers, but really want to get better. You can bring someone in with the express purpose of mentoring you in this area. Or perhaps you’re not a great public speaker. There are fabulous speech coaches out there ready to sharpen your skills and make you keynote worthy. (My speech coach, Nick Morgan, forever transformed my abilities and I’ll never be able to thank him enough, nor Tim Sanders for introducing me to him).
Lastly, what are your threats? What threats are out there that could derail you or your company if you don’t address them? Have you become a dinosaur in some way? Or perhaps lost touch with your key clients? What threats currently exist that could set you back?
Taking Action on Your SWOT Analysis
Now step back. What do you see? Usually, there are two equally valid courses of direction: (1) Hire a CEO that can balance you out, or (2) Hire an executive management team to “own” the aspects of your CEO role that you’re not great at doing. There are pros and cons to both directions, but regardless of which choice is best for you and your business, the opportunity cost of not taking this step could be detrimental.
By getting in touch with and truly knowing what aspects of your role someone else could better execute, you can free yourself of the burden of getting these things wrong and exposing your weaknesses to the market.
What’s more if you had 60% more time in your day, what would you be doing with it? Most CEOs complain that there simply isn’t enough time in the day. The fact is, there’s more than enough time if you’re focused on the right things and surround yourself with a team who can do the things that you’re not great at doing. This direction may require some short-term sacrifices to get it done, but the long-term growth and success associated with hiring the right people into the right roles will far exceed any short-term pain you must endure in order to make it happen.
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