Growing with your business

When it’s time to give yourself a promotion from labourer to manager

Many people find themselves driven to start their own business for the benefits of flexibility and uncapped income potential. Yet, there is a common misconception that business ownership means year-round gruelling hours; if your business isn’t succeeding, you simply need to work harder.

In truth, the end goal of entrepreneurship should be a business that operates successfully without you. We’ve discussed previously how to run a start-up or small business with a big business mindset. This week, we look at how your role should reflect the business’ progression over time. We’ve broken this process down into four key stages.

Phase 1 – The labourer

In the early stages of business ownership, it’s to be expected that your role would be very similar to that of your employees; you’re hands-on, completing the service that your customers hire you for.

In this phase, you’ll still find yourself donning the steel caps most of the week.

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Phase 2 – The manager

This is where your team has grown and you’ve perhaps added some extra vehicles and tools to the fleet. With a more complex set up of moving parts, your business requires a manager to oversee operations.

While managers will occasionally jump back on the tools, most of your time in this phase should be spent setting and tracking business goals, making sure standards are met and building out effective processes for managing the increasing workload.

 

Phase 3 – The leader

The transition from manager to leader is less of a change in your day-to-day tasks but rather a more conscious understanding of who you are and the energy and attitude you bring to your work.

A leader is less hands-on. Instead, you’re more focused on getting the best performance out of your employees. In this phase, you should have a clear understanding of the business goals and be setting the example of how the business runs day-to-day in order to achieve these goals.

 

Phase 4 – The entrepreneur

This is the final stage of business ownership. In this phase, the business should run successfully without you. Entrepreneurs spend their time thinking about the future – where to next? Where do you want the business to be in ten years time? What aspects of the market provide opportunities for growth?

An entrepreneur only has time to think about the bigger picture things because they’ve successfully navigated the world of small business, having now established a largely autonomous medium-large operation. Entrepreneurs leverage the capital, experience and industry-connections of one business to jump-start another venture.

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Respect where you are right now

It’s not uncommon for business owners to attempt to exist within every phase all at once. However, it’s nearly impossible to be thinking innovatively about your business’ future when you’re in the middle of installing wires or tiling a roof.

It’s not only an inefficient use of time, but it could also hinder your business growth. Allow yourself and your business to grow in a natural progression and you’ll soon find yourself reaping the benefits of business ownership.

The Tradies Accountant team of business consultants know the trades industry and how to best navigate small-business growth. Contact the team today.