Most family and friends say that I’m not good at being without a project.
And since most of my time at present is consumed by my business, it’s safe to say that my projects emanate from ideas I have for the business.
Of course, I always have a ton of ideas percolating in my head. The mastery of these ideas has to be with three questions in mind:
Do they add value to what we are doing?
Is it something that grows the business?
Can it actually be done?
That’s why I have my group of experts; my “Brain Trust” is what they are to me. How they help is beyond description. Yet each person understands me and knows what I’m striving for.
Someone is there to hold me back as I usually plunge into commitments (oh, so typical entrepreneurial person that I am) without always looking at the financial side of things. Another is there to be the “keeper of my brand”- to make sure this new idea or venture fits and makes sense.
If there is technology involved, another evaluates how it fits, if can we make it work and how it adds to the presence we already have.
And because I’ve described these roles in no particular order, I also rely on input from an operations stand put. How will we get the word out? Who will become the “master” to see the implementation through to completion?
When I first started out, many, if not all, of these roles were fulfilled by me. So it was often a question of time first, money second. So that often kept me in check.
But as my business grew, I knew that I had to find those “brains” that could help me where I had limited skill, or knowledge, or truth be known, where I really needed the wisdom to step back, take a breath and ponder the task ahead.
So if there is anything I have learned to ask for over the last 6 years is to ask for help and not to be shy about it.
And I have to say that, that in the process of growing my business, the contribution form my daily operations staff has contributed mightily to creating the back bone of my business. Right now, that’s Annie, Patti, Cara, Tracey, Kelly and Brenda. And past employees who added their time and talents while they were there- like Charmaine, Mary, Leslie, Karin, Dana, Mary D., Sara and a host of others who have moved on and have found their calling in other areas.
So we go into 2011 with many parts of the business on track, many that can grow and a few that will be new and need some nurturing to see them blossom.