There are times when being the CEO you question the journey you are on, wondering if you have sold out completely to the corporate world or that your values are no longer congruent with the company you work for or the clients you are taking on.
It is at these times that you need to centre yourself and take a moment to remember why you do what you do and is there a need for change or does your passion need to be reinvigorated. Are you being true to yourself?
Before you make any knee-jerk decisions or ones that are done at the end of a long day (week, month or year), take a moment to stop and see what you have achieved.
Whether it’s drawing a vision board, using sticky notes, coloured pencils or good old-fashioned writing paper, get it out of your head. Seeing it in writing and being able to join the dots (your thoughts) or share it with someone else provides you an opportunity to see what you’ve achieved, the path you’re now on and if you’re truly happy with the direction.
We all know of the 7-year itch whether it be in love or business and being in my 22nd year of business, three times I’ve thought about running away to a deserted island where I don’t have to think about BAS, PAYG, employees’ mistakes, clients’ demands and social media updates on what we are doing every minute of the day! Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do and have amazing clients and a great team, however, every so often there is that little voice inside my head saying “Is this it? I am being true to myself?” So before you begin to resent your business, let’s look at a few areas that could be improved upon or developed.
New people—new ideas
Which areas in your business take up a lot of your time? Which do you enjoy least? Is there someone currently in your business who could do this or do you need to recruit or outsource?
Employ a person with drive, passion, initiative, great work ethic and ideas. It may not be easy to find someone but it’s not impossible and it’s worth waiting to find the right one instead of taking on ‘anyone’. New people bring new ideas and a fresh approach. Review your needs, write a job description and recruit with the end purpose in mind.
New space—do you need to be where you are?
Close your eyes picture your ideal workplace or what you had imagined when you first opened your business? Do you have it now? Is it a space where you and your team are productive or are you easily distracted? Could you relocate to a larger or perhaps a smaller space depending on your needs now and in the coming years? By relocating would you save money, be able to employ more team members or just have a better outlook to the outside world?
New services—new clients
Whatever the season you can spring clean the services and products you offer and even your client list! Are you still true to your core values? Expansion is wonderful and for any business to survive it needs to grow, however, you need to truly look at your offering. Is there an opportunity to add a new range or a complementary program, or do you begin your journey in a new direction?
Take the time to listen to your clients; how are their businesses evolving and can you offer a product or service that will assist them and prevent them from looking to your competitors for alternatives and options.
Or have you identified a gap in the market and you know that what you have will fill it?
Look at your client list; are there A, B, C and D clients? Can you develop the Ds or do you cut them loose? Is there a new market for your business that you can explore?
New team motivation—connecting with the community
Giving back through time or money impacts on the receiver as well as the giver. Many people today look at a company’s values and culture before joining the team and regard a business that supports a charity with more than just a cheque, blips strongly not their radar. When it comes to charity, you have to know the reason why your business is supporting it; is it a tax write off or is it something that you or someone close has been effected by or is it a global problem. Be honest, the amount of energy and time you and your team devote to it, will certainly make your motives known rather quickly. There is no right or wrong reason, just know the why.
Being true to yourself
Make the time in your diary to take some time out of the business, to regain your passion and enthusiasm. You may want to get away completely or take a few days out of the office to create your journey, revisit past ideas or create new goals. It is your choice and only you can make the decision and the changes needed.