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Why Your Staff Can’t Make Decisions Without You

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Take a look at what’s on your calendar today or tomorrow. Is it filled with meetings that you have either been invited to or initiated where the goal is to make a company decision? Are you the only one in the company that can make that decision? Probably not, but you don’t trust anyone else to make that decision because whenever you have, you’ve been let down, so you stopped letting anyone else make the decisions.

A full calendar, and decision making resting with you and you alone, forces a ceiling on both you and the business. It means you’re not free to ponder the bigger questions of the business, strategize its growth or take the meetings that match your skill set and position. As a result, staff members rarely voice opinions any longer as they don’t know how you’ll react to their suggestions. This is a common situation, especially in owner operated businesses. The business is your baby and you’re the only one that can raise it properly. Of course that thinking is just in your head. You had the vision to start the business but it doesn’t mean you need to manage veery aspect of it. There are many tasks in my business that I could do because I know how, but I choose not to, instead focusing my time where it will benefit the business most.

Oftentimes, the reason for this micromanagement comes down to a lack of a cohesive, unified vision, set of values and mission for the company that employees not only buy into, but are the biggest advocates of. We need rails and fences to keep us where we need to be going or where we need to remain. We seek out and yearn for structure so that we can utilize our talents to help best exemplify and achieve the standards and goals shared by the company and as a company leader, you are being looked to to provide these guides.

The solution is easier than you might think and the results are dramatic. This solution requires you to remove as much subjectivity from your vision, mission and goals as possible. In doing so, you create the framework for employees to help you achieve your goals without constant intervention or micromanagement. But it takes discipline and belief. You must believe in yourself and the company enough to want to do it. The greatest joy in my business comes from seeing the faces of business leaders after undertaking the work to articulate the company’s position, vision and values, who are free to pursue the bigger picture goals, free to grow the company, safe in the knowledge that everyone understands where they are going. That feeling is amazing!

When the vision and purpose are clear, strategies become easier and tactics become second nature. Measurement of every aspect becomes possible now that there’s something to measure against, it becomes easier to hire, fire and invest in areas that help achieve the stated, documented and shared goals. Staff start to think about new and different ways to reach targets, management considers new business opportunities to explore and all because everyone now knows what the company stands for and where it is going.

In our Brandforging process, we use a proprietary set of tools and strategies to help companies achieve margin and preference. In this process, marketing tactics and the things normally rushed to in times of greatest need, are three quarters the way into the process. You see, without the foundation laid, we have no business building walls and erecting roofs. The consequences would be dire.

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