“A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way.”
Many business owners suffer from the ‘going it alone syndrome.’ They have a business with all the demands of larger firms, but without the skills or staff to perform the day-to-day management, financial and planning functions. They try and do too much which sometimes results in even less getting accomplished over the long run. It is easy to become mired in small details and push aside or delay the decisions that really matter.
The sheer number of choices that owners must make each day-what products to buy, what information merits attention, what tasks to prioritize-can be overwhelming. The burden of isolation can often lead to inaction and being unable to process the next step or decision.
So, what to do? The first step is to simply understand what you’re up against. Start by slowing down a little bit and trying to understand better what you’re up against. Speed is the enemy of reflection. Next, get some help. A reliable support system is crucial to an owner’s success and you should begin cultivating a group of trusted advisors who can provide a safe outlet for you to express concerns and reliably provide honest unvarnished feedback. In many cases, learning to accept feedback is a challenge within itself; especially if you believe “no one knows better than you.”
Often known but rarely discussed, owners are plagued by feelings of isolation and many feel it hinders their performance. Take a minute each day to reflect on how complex and even scary your job responsibilities can be. The more accepting a business owner is of this reality, the easier it is to seek and accept support in dealing with it.
Unfortunately, the ‘going it alone syndrome’ can be fatal to a business, if not corrected. And even if not fatal, then surely it will limit the business’ success, such that the business is just surviving… not thriving.
Gene G. Wright
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