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If you’re like most entrepreneurs, you’re probably experiencing one or more of five common frustrations:
- Lack of control: You don’t have enough control over your time, the market, or your company. Instead of controlling the business, the business is controlling you.
- People: You’re frustrated with your employees, customers, vendors, or partners. They don’t seem to listen, understand you, or follow through with their actions. You’re not all on the same page.
- Profit: Simply put, there’s not enough of it.
- The ceiling: Your growth has stopped. No matter what you do, you can’t seem to break through and get to the next level. You feel overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next.
- Nothing’s working: You’ve tried various strategies and quick-fix remedies. None have worked for long and, as a result, your staff has become numb to new initiatives. You’re spinning your wheels and you need traction to move again.
You’re probably worrying needlessly about a hundred different things yourself. Let’s try to remove you from some of those worries by taking a wide-angle view of your business and its components. Below are the Six Key Components of any organization.
Successful business owners not only have compelling visions for their organizations, but also know how to communicate those visions to the people around them. They get everyone in the organization seeing the same clear image of where the business is going and how it’s going to get there. It sounds easy, but it’s not.
Successful leaders surround themselves with great people. You can’t build a great company without help. A practical understanding of the two essential ingredients of any great team: the right people in the right seats.
The best leaders rely on a handful of metrics to help manage their businesses. The Data Component frees you from the quagmire of managing personalities, egos, subjective issues, emotions, and intangibles by teaching you which metrics to focus on.
Issues are the obstacles that must be faced to execute your vision. Just as an individual’s success is directly proportionate to his or her ability to solve any issues that arise, the same holds true for a company.
Your processes are your Way of doing business. Successful organizations see their Way clearly and constantly refine it. Due to lack of knowledge, this secret ingredient in business is the most neglected of the Six Key Components. Most entrepreneurs don’t understand how powerful process can be, but when you apply it correctly, it works like magic, resulting in simplicity, scalability, efficiency, and profitability.
In the end, the most successful business leaders are the ones with traction. They execute well, and they know how to bring focus, accountability, and discipline to their organization.
What are you?
In a small to mid-size company, the Visionary is typically the owner, co-owner, or founder. The visionary typically has 10 new ideas a week. Nine of them might not be so great, but one usually is, and it’s that one idea each week that keeps the organization growing. For this reason, visionaries are invaluable. They’re typically very creative. They’re great solvers of big ugly problems (not the little practical ones) and fantastic with important clients, vendors, suppliers, and banking relationships. The culture of the organization is very important to them because they usually operate more on emotion and therefore have a better barometer of how people are feeling. If you’re one, know thyself and be free.
It’s common for a company to have a Visionary but no Integrator. This causes a real struggle, because the Visionary is constantly frustrated with his or her lack of traction. In addition, he or she has to keep acting as the Integrator and get pulled into the day-to-day management of the business.
The Integrator is the person who harmoniously integrates the major functions of the business. When those major functions are strong and you have strong people accountable for each, great healthy friction and tension will occur between them. The Integrator blends that friction into greater energy for the company as a whole. The Integrator is the person who has the unique ability to run the organization, manage day-to-day issues that arise, and integrate the three major functions. The integrator is the glue that holds the company together.
Integrators are typically very good at leading, managing, and holding people accountable. They love running the day-to-day aspects of the business. They are accountable for profit and loss, plus the overall business plan for the organization. They remove obstacles so that people running the major functions can execute. They’re great at special projects. In sum, they operate more on logic. If you are one, know thyself and be stressed.
The Online Business Consultant as Integrator
The role of the Online Business Consultant boils down to one simple thing:
Freeing up the Visionary so that they can focus their time and energy on the things that only THEY can do in their business.
The question you, the Visionary, should ask yourself through your workday is:
“Is this something only you, the Visionary, can do?”
If the answer is yes (usually things like setting your vision, marketing, product development, and forming and nurturing strategic alliances), I will tell you to keep on doing it. If the answer is no, I suggest that it’s time for you to let go of that task and pass it on to your team. For many business owners, this can be a very tough yet liberating journey. They are used to doing everything on their own and it takes some time to break the habits of doing the things that really aren’t the best use of their time. And in some cases, the business owner may be hiding behind some of these tasks so that they don’t have to go out and do the business-building tasks required of them.
These distractions are what I take care of as the Online Business Consultant. I am not stepping in to do all the work; my role is to manage all the pieces so that the business owner can be free to focus on growth and expansion.
- You are looking for a thought partner. We all know the value and importance of talking to others about business strategies and ideas. Being a business owner can be a lonely job and I believe it is essential to have others with whom you can collaborate in order to create a successful and fulfilling business. Business owners want someone to be a sounding board, to brainstorm with them, share ideas and consider options; someone who isn’t afraid to speak up.
- You need someone who is always looking for ways to market your business. The specific strategies will vary depending on your overall business plan and niche market. As an Online Business Consultant, I am familiar with and practically experienced in the many facets of Internet marketing.
- You need a decision maker. You are not looking for someone to make ALL the decisions, but someone who can help with a lot of the tactical and operational decisions that come up on a day-to-day basis, such as administrative, operational, and customer service decisions.
1. Project Management – Help ensure that things get done.
2. Operations Management – Set up systems that ensures your business runs smoothly.
- Creating (or updating) Standard Operating Procedures in an online wiki. Using a wiki will give everyone a central, online location for accessing the guide when needed. Plus, a wiki system is very easy to update and will track when changes are made and by whom.
- Automating processes. Leaving less room for errors and delays and you will generally pay less for an automated system than for a person to do the same task. The benefit is that it will free up the team to focus on other business building tasks.
3. People Management – Help build and manage the virtual team. The objective is to keep it lean by automating before hiring.
4. Money Management – Help the Visionary look at the bottom line. This includes statistics and analytics of web traffic plus conversion; lists for prospects, clients, affiliates, and potential clients; sales/revenue of each product; ad-tracking promotions; expenses on systems, tools, and team members.
Specifications & Milestones
What you want is to embrace your VISIONARY-self once again. Fill out this form today and let’s discuss next steps that will move you forward again.
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