I’ve learned something on the road to being a business owner and leadership executive. As we all know, in business, there are two roles in an organization for an owner, where an owner works on the business, develops the systems and processes, fosters relationships, creates sales, and builds the company as they see fit. Then there is a role where the owner needs to work in the business. They are integrally involved on the operations side, being in the field, delegating to the crews, seeing projects come to fruition, or seeing the big lots cleared of snow….’keeping an eye on things, and being that-to to person’. With all of the above, the owner’s mindset often becomes somewhat; it works for me, sales continue to be made, inquires keep coming in, employees seem loyal, and the employees know what to do on a day-to-day basis. So, there seems to be no reason to change the situation as it works. That’s all fine for the ‘content’ business owner who feels safe with where they are at.
Then there is the entrepreneurial business owner, or simply the business owner above, who has now realized that the status quo is not enough. They realized that they have the ideas, energy, and infrastructure in place to do more. They are innovative, progressive, forward-thinking, and energy-charged. They have done everything above and realize that they want more. They want to ‘transform’ the organization from where it has been to where it should be. They now have the ‘Mind-Set’; it’s time to navigate the company to the next level. They know It’s a big step. It’s the realization for the owner that it is really now the time to work more on the business than in the business. It is time to realize the real meaning of company culture, organizational structure, delegation, accountability, and ‘TEAM.’ (Together Everyone Achieves More) These words have real meaning in an organization that is moving forward, and an owner must be committed to moving the organization ahead with this mindset.
Onward to transitional leadership and moving the company ahead.
Transformational leaders tend to be visible to the staff. They work among the employees, moving the staff forward with inspirational words and actions. One of the lasting effects of this kind of management style is that the employees develop a stronger sense of confidence in the company. Managers are seen as the company representatives, and when the company representatives are overtly upbeat about the company’s future, the subordinates begin to accept that as motivation. Rather than questioning company methods, employees work harder to help achieve company results. Employees that become inspired by transformational leaders find themselves wanting the company to succeed. With a transformational manager pushing hard on the staff, the staff begins to believe in the company’s success and starts to take company success personally. This elicits a stronger sense of commitment from the staff that will directly affect productivity and efficiency. Employees want to see the success they hear about through transformational leaders, which causes the staff to dedicate more of their time and effort to ensuring company success. Transformational leaders often inspire employees by explaining how employee can improve their performance through greater education. As a visionary leader, the transformational manager helps employees to envision career success through further education and training. When employees see positive results from training and education, they will become even more dedicated to developing their own careers as outlined by the transformational leader. One of the elements of being a transformational leader is delegating responsibility to subordinates to assist in their career development. Transformational leaders believe that employees benefit through additional responsibility; as employees take on greater responsibility, they become company leaders themselves. Transformational leadership perpetuates itself by getting the staff involved in important decisions and showing confidence in the employees’ ability to make the right choices. This creates an ongoing managerial talent pool to choose from and allows the company to grow.
While transitional leadership is part of the change management process in growing an organization, the foundation is its people and clients. Many companies fail in this journey due to the lack of understanding of the process and what it takes to be successful. If your look at the landscape-snow industry, you can clearly see that the companies that have grown in both revenue and market share, regionally or nationally, have done so by implementing these strategies. The companies that have only done so with a half-hearted mindset are actually like a juniper in the shade, they might always exist, but they will probably never really thrive.
Looking for a good book on the subject, suggested reading;
- The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It Paperback – by Michael E. Gerber