My Role: Get out of the way, but don’t disappear.
In my company, a focus of my role is to make sure I am not in the way or causing a bottleneck in the business. I have a team of extremely capable individuals who need and deserve the opportunity to shine. The other major thing I realised was that even though I must get out of the way, I still need to be present and available to people to ensure they are heard and supported.
Understanding where people need help and noticing and nurturing them are crucial. Over the years, we have lost a few potential rockstars because I have been unable to recognise this in time.
Diversity doesn’t begin or end with gender and ethnicity.
Neurodiversity is equally important and often neglected. We are all wired differently. In many ways, that helps us build something special.
I’m particularly attuned to this. My daughter has an ADHD and Autism diagnosis. That may pose some challenges, but some of her traits (or superpowers) will likely make her a very successful and formidable adult.
AI is changing how we define great team members.
We are using more and more artificial intelligence in our business. As a result, the skillsets of our people are changing. Thinking about who have emerged as the real rockstars in the business are the ones that have either good EQ or good business sense. When I started, it was the technical proficiency that trumped all.
This journey has been interesting for me personally. When I started the business, I had to be the technician, the salesperson, business owner and everything else. As the years have gone by, I have had to adapt my own style and output to that which the market responds to.
Navigating conflict is worth more than avoiding it.
Intrinsically, I am someone that does not like conflict. Unfortunately, a certain level of conflict seems unavoidable when you are in business. I’ve personally had to rack up the lawyers fees on more than one occasion!
Over these six weeks, I spent many hours considering what I could have done differently to resolve recent conflicts before they escalated. Ultimately, I concluded that while although I could have approached some instances differently, there will always be some people who create and attract conflict. In the future, it would be better to avoid engaging with people like that or, if we must, be very aware of the potential outcomes.
A step back can help you lean in.
Although my recent trip was not a real break (we were crazy busy the whole time), it did allow me to get out of the business and take a helicopter view. I believe all business owners should take some time every year to get out of the weeds and look at their business from a new, top-level perspective.