My mother had a number of good catch-all phrases. “Ages and stages” was one she used to describe any particular passage her children or grandchildren were going through. It’s quite reassuring to hear that this or that behaviour was “just a stage”. Everything passes.
I thought of that the other day when I was talking to a business owner who was describing how she is totally over it with her business. She’s at the stage where her enthusiasm for managing people, never very high anyway, has reached an all time low. I didn’t tell her that her team’s enthusiasm for being managed by her, also never very high, has reached a similar position.
If you don’t like doing it, or you do it reluctantly, you probably don’t do a very good job of it.
I don’t know many business owners who like doing administration, but I have known a ridiculous number who thought they had to do it anyway. Generally they did a pretty crap job of it when they finally got around to it. Control is a curable disease – it’s just a stage.
There are lot of owners who shouldn’t try to manage. They don’t have the aptitude for people and process which is what management is really all about.
I remember a discussion at one of our Mastery workshops which revealed that the people in the room with the most enthusiasm for detail and process were the Managing Directors, but only for others, not themselves.
Some people get to the point where they should get out of the business. It could be because they’ve lost the joy for it, or simply because they aren’t willing to make the investment/take the risk/spend the time and energy to make it successful. Someone else could do a better job of it, and the current owner could then do a better job somewhere else.
Ask the person in the mirror two hard questions:
- Are you the right person to run this business?
- Are you the right person to own this business?
Be honest. It could be the start of something beautiful.