Issue #4 What I Have Learned Leading in A Remote World

This week’s issue is a little bit different than the previous three, however, it is very relevant to all future-proof entrepreneurs. This week we are talking about Leadership which is imperative in today’s decentralized, work-from-home world.

How can we be great leaders under the new normal?

In the pages below, I will lay out my system which was developed over 14 years, and sourced from a number of great leaders and systems. I will give you my simple 5 step framework that I designed and use today. Although I feel like it is never complete, it's rooted in a lot of experience, and an iterative framework that will likely keep getting better.

Knowledge + Experience = Confidence

In the absence of experience, we all need a playbook/system that we can start from. My hope is that this helps you move the needle. Thankfully, I had this framework in place before 2020 turned us upside down.

How did we get here?

A very wise friend, and business development guy once told me, “Don’t confuse motion with progress. It's incredibly easy to do a bunch of stuff because it feels good to move, but it ultimately doesn’t matter.”

A great visual, to make this point, is imagine sitting in your office chair and spinning in a circle. You are definitely moving with each revolution of the chair, but in reality, you aren’t gaining any ground/progress in any direction. You may have heard this referred to as the 80-20 rule (Pareto Principle); which suggests that 80% of our results come from 20% of our efforts.

“In business, a goal of the 80-20 rule is to identify inputs that are potentially the most productive and make them the priority. For instance, once managers identify factors that are critical to their company's success, they should give those factors the most focus.” - Investopedia.com

This simple piece of advice has saved me a lot of heartache, stress, and wasted time working on stuff that doesn’t actually drive us towards our vision. It taught me to always question the work that I am doing, the partnerships we are pursuing, the team that we are building, and the changes that we are making. Because 80% of the issues we are faced with are stemming from 20% of the business and vice versa. However, as leaders, we often fail to consume, digest, analyze, and translate all the information before making a decision. I cannot recall the exact story, but I once heard about the inner workings of Native American Tribal meetings and it went something like this:

During Native American Tribal meetings, the Chief is typically the very last person to speak, because he is gathering all the information from his key leaders, before speaking.

However, in western culture, the leader is often placed at the front of the team and expected to lead by telling everyone else what to do; which works very well in small businesses but falls apart as businesses grow and/or become decentralized. WHY? Because one person can not have all the information necessary to make the correct decisions. Mainly, because they are not involved in enough day-to-day. And for those of you that try, 99.9% of the time, the problem you are solving, is not the actual problem. Therefore, in the wise words of Dan Sullivan, “ You have to Delegate to Elevate”

Don’t Confuse Motion with Progress

It starts with proper orientation.

Are you focused on Growth or Scale?

Although they share some similarities, they are grossly different.

Secondly, there are four big levers that you can pull on in your business in order to drive change; however, they all have to remain in balance in order to get the desired result. Overemphasizing any pillar, while neglecting the other will long-term lead to disaster; especially in this new normal of work from home.

The 4 levers: READ THE REST