We don’t have an exact answer figure, but we reckon 98.1% of entrepreneurs are okay with putting in the hard work if it means they can sit back and enjoy a bit more freedom down the line. Yeah, we’re talking about creating a business that works without you needing to be there. The problem is, most founders end up working for their businesses instead of their businesses working for them.
If you’re not sure which camp you fall into, try pondering this scenario: you are kidnapped, put in the trunk of a Ford Mondeo and kept hostage (albeit well-looked after) for a fortnight, maybe even a month – what would happen to your business? Would it thrive, would it survive or would it fall apart faster than a filo pastry?
If it is the latter option, don’t despair. We’ve pulled together a few tips and tricks to help make your business start running smoothly without you. Enjoy the early retirement you’ve always dreamed about.
1. Automate All You Can
The more of your processes you can automate, the fewer things will need you – or someone – to focus their efforts on. Automate your customer service response, look at your method to manage your policies and procedure, streamline your onboarding processes, your systems for filing documents, your workflows, invoicing, anything. The more you can automate, the less chance there will be of human error getting involved and that means less for you to oversee.
2. Let Your Employees Work
Any leader that has trouble relinquishing control will no doubt have a stringent interview process to make sure they only bring on the very best talent. You don’t want anything but the right candidate to take your business forward. That means you have hired each of your employees for a reason, so let them do their jobs. Let them do the very role you hired them to do. Instead of hovering over them, inspire and empower them and let them figure out which way of doing things suits them. It will make your hopes of standing back come true, that’s a promise.
3. Step Away For A Bit
It doesn’t have to be long, a week let’s say. What you will find from stepping back for this length of time is you get a better understanding of how your company runs without you. We’re talking about turning your phone off for that entire week and then evaluating the result when you come back. This will let you see where your big weaknesses are, where the biggest issues arose and which unanswered questions need some attention. It’s about having more understanding of where your team needs further assistance, training and empowerment.
4. Be A Better Delegator
The role of CEO is a bit of an ambiguous one. That’s why you should cross this out and then make a list of all the tasks and roles you took on the past six months to a year. Once you have this in front of you, start categorizing and delegating them. This won’t be creating more work for anyone else, it will give them the chance to take total responsibility for a role and all the responsibilities that come with it and that can be immensely motivating.
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