Julian’s Business Tips: Just You? Or a Team?

Julian’s Business Tips: Just You? Or a Team?

This month, I want you to think about whether your new business is just you, or do you see yourself employing a team one day?

Working on your own is great – freedom from interference and staff problems, but it’s also lonely, and everything falls to you. You have all the responsibility, for everything.

We often start a business because we like to do the thing that the business does, e.g. you like gardening, so you start a gardening business. But it’s essential to do some early strategic planning, or you risk falling into the Technician Trap and becoming imprisoned in your business later.

The Technician Trap is where you end up being so busy making your company’s product or providing the service that you have no time to recruit staff, or even to have a life outside the business! And if you can’t work for whatever reason, you lose income, maybe lose customers and risk the business folding.

So the strongest businesses involve a team (not just a gang of mates), structured to achieve the business’s long-term objectives (more about those later).

With a team, you need to show ‘leadership and management, words that are often said together but have very different meanings.

The leader clearly states their company’s vision and leads staff towards it with passion and clarity of focus. The manager makes sure that the team’s working well – capitalising on individual strengths and mitigating weaknesses – all making the group much more powerful than the sum of its parts.
But you also need to be a strategist!

This month’s homework is to try and articulate your company’s vision, the long-term objectives we mentioned earlier: where do you want to get to? And next month we’ll look at strategy – how you and the team are going to get there!