When it comes to dealing with the stress of running a business, as entrepreneurs we will default into operating from one of 2 categories – Ostrich or Control Freak.
If you are an Ostrich, you default into avoidance mode. When challenges arise you put your head in the sand and cross your fingers, hoping that someone else will swoop in and save the day.
Ostriches generally don’t like, or understand, the “behind the scenes” stuff in business. In fact, you may hate it. So you tend to rely too much on other people for the answers and to do the work that needs to be done. You will hire and blindly trust people on a whim, assuming that whoever you hired is doing it right, which isn’t always the case and can lead to big issues. You may end up wasting time and money on hiring the wrong people, implementing the wrong systems and trying to fix mistakes down the road.
If you are a Control Freak, you default into do-it-all-myself mode. You keep too much on your plate, have a tough time delegating and end up working yourself to exhaustion.
A Control Freak comes from a place of believing that we do it best and that no one else could possibly do the work as well as we can. Although this might be true to a degree, it’s a dangerous place to be in as the Control Freak ends up doing it all! You spend so much time and energy on all the “behind the scenes” stuff, that you don’t have time to actually grow your business and deliver on your services. This leads to a lot of frustration, long working hours and ultimately, burnout.
So which one is your default mode in moments of stress & challenge?
(I’m a total control freak in moments of stress!)
It’s important to understand this about ourselves so that we don’t spend too much time on either “extreme” end of this spectrum – both of which can be damaging to your business health.
What we are aiming for is to be in the middle– to operate from a place of empowerment where you:
- are aware of what it takes to run and grow your business (instead of putting your head in the sand)
- have systems and a team in place that you know can get the job done (instead of trying to do it all yourself)
- own your responsibility for running your business, and won’t settle for less than the best for everyone concerned (including yourself).
This is what it means to be the CEO of your business. To lead with skill & wisdom.