Dynamic Management requires Leadership – Vision

Your management team can take your business to heights that you never even dreamed of or it can sink it faster than a rock. Some management teams just keep the ship afloat but it doesn’t ever seem to go anywhere? Has your business really changed in the last 5 years or is it just drifting without any real purpose or strategy except to stay in business?

Right now your business should be booming better than it has in the last 10 years, but so is everyone else. There are no bragging rights in this economy unless you are doing something truly remarkable. How did Ronald Reagan put it, “A rising tide, raises all boats”?

Do you think your business has the potential to achieve more than just the average of your past sales and profits? Dynamic management requires leadership practices as well and to be a leader you need vision. You have to be able to see the potential of what can take place.

It takes courage to be a leader and it takes special skills as well. These skills take time to develop and involve the motivating, influencing and encouraging of others. It is more than sharing a vision you must be able to get others to see and really want to reach their potential.

In order for your business to change you need to improve employee engagement and empowerment. Happy employees are more apt to make sure your customers can get the value and satisfaction they need from your product or service. Employee engagement will be vital to your future.

In order for your business to rise above the crowd, you need dynamic management, which includes excellent leadership skills and engaged employees. You want more than a smooth running ship you want a ship that employees can get excited about where their ship is going.

You don’t develop dynamic management and leadership by taking a class. But there are a number of things that you can do to move in that direction. Learn more about who you and your management team are and the various aspects of their behavior and what motivates them. Then you can learn to develop the skills you want to lead better.

We are always willing to have a conversation with you about how to impact the lives of others while also sharing with you how someone can impact your life. For your success, you need to develop leadership skills, “Because All Business IS Personal!”

Stan Broesder is a Business Consultant and Management Coach with Crossroads Consultants. They specialize in business performance and management development. If you would like to have a conversation about your situation contact Stan by email at Stan@MyCrossroadsConsultants.com. Or call but leave a message 980-241-0189.

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How Do I Grow My Business When I Am Maxed Out? — Phase III

Phase III – Challenges and hindrances in reaching your destination

There are two main categories of challenges to reaching your goals. There is the external issues category, which has many issues, and there is the internal issues category, which is usually hidden. It is the hidden internal issues that plague your business and you might not even know it.

Internal (hidden) Issues

Let’s say that in order for you to grow your business you need to hire an additional employee. You struggle to find a good employee that you can re depend on. You struggle with training someone in your methods and systems of operation. You have to constantly monitor what they are doing.

The hidden challenge, in this case, is that you dread hiring someone only to find that they don’t work out and you’re back to square one. Now you find the next person that you have to train, observe and hold accountable. You have done it, you can do it, but you don’t like it! Therefore, your own attitude about hiring and managing another new person on your team weighs on you and occupies more time and energy MENTALLY than it really should.

Attitudes and Emotions

Our attitudes and emotions drain our time and energy. We will have a difficult time moving forward on growing our business if we don’t recognize these issues. One reason we struggle to grow our business is that these internal challenges drain our personal resources.

 People tell me that they DO NOT have a problem with procrastination. Yet there are a number of areas in which they procrastinate. They put off doing employee reviews (they hate them). They put off meeting with the clients from… well, let’s just say, difficult clients. They don’t make the call to a prospect. They are late on bills, proposals, meetings, etc., procrastination?

You need to buy or replace some equipment and struggle with the details because money is tight. Should you expand, buy, invest, hire… and the list goes on and on all of them requiring your resources that you have so little of.

But nothing will change if you just keep doing the same thing. No one is going to come rescue you. The economy turning around is not going to be the answer because your competitors are determined to not let it.

“We’re doing fine!”

What makes the internal challenge so hard is that most business professionals will not acknowledge their internal struggles such as fear, complacency, closed-mindedness, unwilling to change, procrastination, regret, and resentment.

Too often your history and current mindset are hindering your performance, profitability, and accountability. How often have I heard a client tell me that “we have tried that” or “we have tried to fix that and that’s just the way it is,” only for me to then find a solution.

Why are you maxed out?

You can achieve your goals, but you must be willing to walk the journey internally to understand what may be hindering your progress. Why are you “Maxed out?” What is going on in your mind and business that requires you to overtax your personal resources?

You must look at the real challenges and hindrances in your business. Be willing to look inside first. What other hindrances and challenges are there that you may not know about? Our next post we’ll look at some other challenges.

Stan Broesder, MBA has helped business owners to solve problems related to growth, profitability, and sales for 25 years. He also helps clients to develop management skills and can be reached at Stan@MyCrossroadsConsultants.com or at 980-241-0189.

How Does Crossroads Consultants Help Business Owners Solve Business Problems?

This is a quick look at how a business consultant may help a client.

Consulting involves changes. If nothing changes there is no need for a consultant. Even if we only provide information that you didn’t have before that would change the basis of which you might make a decision.

What you may want is to prevent something that is detrimental to you or your business either at present or sometime in the future. This could include new competition, regulation, the loss of a vendor, poor employee morale and engagement, dropping sales, lowering profits, etc.

The other thing would be to reach or progress toward a goal or potential in your business. This could include improved sales or profits, taking advantage of new products and services, hiring the right people, improving performance and productivity, investing in new equipment or facilities, or expansion of some kind. All of these would help you to improve your business in the future. You need to make sure that the risks are calculated and the proper processes are put in place.

I make sure that I get the right perspective on the situation. That means that we want to make sure we don’t get just a little bit of information and make a quick diagnosis of the problem with an even quicker prescription of a solution. Without asking enough questions and getting the proper perspective this would be considered “malpractice” and is not acceptable.

Once I have some perspective on a situation then I start to focus in on potential details that may be causing or influencing the issue. Here is where any consultant should be worth their weight in gold. Many times it is not the obvious cause that is the problem; it is the hidden elements that are the real threat to success. A good consultant will not move too quickly and just go with the basic obvious cause. Looking for other influences can really prevent an expensive disaster.

A good business consultant will also know when they need to bring in additional help with specialties in other disciplines. As an example one client was having some real troubles with some billing and cash flow issues. An accountant was brought in to take a look and was able to see some of the problems fairly quickly. In this case the accountant saw that the problem was the poor use of the accounting software, but upon further review the business consultant was able to determine some additional issues of employee morale and management practices that were also influencing the issue. So while the accountant had solved the problem for a little while, it would have returned in the near future without other adjustments.

No matter what your problem, challenge or goal is, if it is more than a simple vendor problem call Crossroads Consultants and get a complimentary conference call. I have connections with specialists that can help you in areas outside of business management consulting. My goals is to help business professionals to improve their business results and performance, if a simple introduction to someone else that is better suited to meet your needs is all that it takes, than I am glad that I can help you and know that I will gain your respect and hopefully trust for when an issue that is more specific to my expertise comes along.

Stan Broesder is the founder and owner of Crossroads Consultants, a business management consulting company that develops management skills and organizational efficiencies for business professionals. Using Strategic Planning, management systems and employee engagement, Stan helps businesses to improve their performance and ultimately their profits while becoming better at planning and executing plans.

Most of Stan’s clients are in Western North Carolina, specifically in Lincolnton, Hickory, Lincoln and Catawba and surrounding counties. He can be reached at 980-241-0189, by email at Stan@MyCrossroadsConsultants.com or through his website. I can help most business professionals to reach their goals, be more profitable and develop higher performance for themselves and their business.

Do You Have Enough Diamonds in the Rough?

Will you find yourself at a disadvantage in your industry? Will your competitors be more agile and respond quicker to the changes in the market place giving them a competitive edge?

According to some “experts” as this economy turns around there will be many management and executive baby boomers who will exit the full time job market because their retirement portfolios will have recovered and they can afford to leave. That could cause a management and leadership vacuum in business. While this may seem contrary to the employment numbers that we are used to hearing about, the issue is skilled and experienced managers and executives.

According to David Delong in a HBR blog, only 20% believe that this will not be a problem.  What if the demand is such that your senior managers are hired for executive positions in your competition’s C-suite, or even other companies. If you have good people and I am sure you do, they are valuable to others as well.

Another thought is that it doesn’t really matter what the economy is doing in this regards. General Electric has produced more C-suite executives including presidents and CEO’s than any other company in the country. Why, because they are constantly developing leaders and those leaders are valuable. The alternative is to have a workforce and management team that is so, “not-so” valuable, that no one wants them. When there is upward mobility available within a company, those with the most potential will be interested in getting on board.

This issue works for small businesses as well. If you are even thinking of retiring in the next 15 years from your business, you need someone with the right skills to run it or your legacy and retirement may be in jeopardy. And in the mean-time having quality management enables you to be a business owner of a company instead of a business owner with a job. So what does a company do to reduce this risk of a leadership shortage regardless of how serious it might be?

One solution to this problem is giving current managers whatever they are looking for in a future career path. If it is more responsibility or money, you can try to accommodate them. But there is only one person in each seat in the C-suite and sometimes they are not willing to wait for someone else to retire.

Even if you have to create a culture that enables entry level executives or senior management to move on, there is value for your business in doing so. With proper planning you can minimize your competition from getting your well groomed talent and you get a reputation for a place that provides opportunities for valuable management candidates (within and outside your company).

The second solution revolves around a common issue in business. Develop the leadership and management skills in your employees so that there is always a source of high quality prospective management talent. A lot of companies resist this type of investment because they are afraid that the employee will leave. There are many aspects to this idea of investing in your employees for management. Hiring right to begin with is important. Make sure you look at knowledge and experience that you get, in exchange for training the skill set.

One example of how to accomplish this is to develop an excellent mentoring program. While the prospective management employee is being groomed through mentoring, have them mentoring others to move up into supervisor type positions. A good mentoring program benefits the whole organization, not just the management team.

If for some reason you are not where you want to be and wish your company had more opportunities, there are still things you can do to boost your potential. Take it upon yourself to learn about management skill sets and practice them wherever you are. You might not have the organizational formal authority, but that doesn’t mean you can’t develop an informal leadership influence within the company.

Start thinking about how you can reduce the risk of having a shortage of quality management talent within your company. We have all seen what the lack of good management and leadership skills can do to a company and other organizations. Start looking for and polish those diamonds in the rough.