When our fast-growth business is on a winning streak, life is great. When things go wrong then it doesn’t feel so great.
There’s also another place we can end up. Partly as a result of the stress and partly as a result of a lack of clarity. Put simply, it is losing your mojo. Everything goes flat. From the outside, you appear to have everything and yet you know there is something missing. Many of us have been there. And I am afraid the results can be catastrophic. It is just that we tend not to talk about these things as they don’t happen to people like us.
But they do. Enough doom and gloom!
It seems that we have all fallen into a trap that we have set ourselves. Within the business we often forget our “why?” – our purpose. What it is we are really trying to achieve rather than just making loads of money. And this trickles into every aspect of our lives.
What I am seeing is more and more MDs and CEOs who feel they earn more than enough. Yet they are somehow dissatisfied. They still want to work but now they want to create something of value (in whatever terms), they want to create a legacy. More importantly, this breed of MD and CEO want to create their own version of success. And this may not simply be about maximising EBITDA at the price of exploiting whatever needs to be squeezed dry.
What they are after, and I believe it is possible, is a balanced but highly successful model where all parts are working really well; where they and the component parts of their business are flourishing. A workplace where all the pieces of the jigsaw work together seamlessly and in harmony. Squeezing the last piece of profitability out of every business function creates the tension that causes the anxiety discussed earlier.
Seeking to create a rather more harmonious whole is quite a different game.
I am simply reporting what I am seeing and giving my spin. The back to basics approach goes back to asking the MD/CEO:
What lifestyle do you want?
What income does the business need to give you?
What does a ‘successful’ business look like to you?
How could you go about creating a sustainable and flourishing business? And what would you do if you ran one?
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