You’ve made it so far in the evolutionary scale – you’ve worked through some tough challenges, from start-up, employing those first members of staff, dealing with hiring managers and directors… and now, here is perhaps the hardest thing you will have to face in your business life. Letting go. Are you ready to learn about the final stages in the evolution of your business?
Here, we are looking at the realms of 3000 properties. You’ve got your teams, you’ve got your managers, your directors. So what comes next?
The beginning of the handover period
If you’ve come this far, you will have begun the process of handing elements of the business over to others. You will have a team of managers, as well as Directors to fall back on, and this will allow you to spend a little more time away from the office. Your role will be much more ‘overseer’ -you’re definitely not answering the phones anymore! At this point in the evolutionary scale, you will be getting ready to hand over to a Board of Directors.
The challenge you face here is how do you go about doing that? How do you hand the reins of your business – your precious baby – over to a Board of Directors, who are capable of making decisions about how things are run? How do you let go, and trust them to do that?
It’s hard, but as the CEO, your role is to lead. You have to be the one who stands at the top and gives direction to everyone else. You need to have the ability to remind the Board of Directors of the aims and the vision of your business. Be their guide, and give them instruction – what do they need to do in order to get there? It’s your vision, but it’s their job to make it happen.
Taming your inner lion
As business owners, we have had to develop a strong personality in order to do what we do. We have learned to be resilient, the force and the brains of our business. We are the kings (and queens) or our enterprise. So it’s no wonder that letting go of that power is hard – it goes against our very nature.
If you are a lion personality, you will by nature be fiercely protective of your business and your employees. But even lions hunt in packs – and having others take on some of that responsibility can only strengthen your business. Work on being that strong, unshakable leader, and let your team follow your example.
Teach what you know
At stage 7, you will be working to develop the directors you have put in place, so that when you do begin the process of removing yourself from the business, you are confident that they continue to run the business according to your own model. They need to learn and have confidence in your mind-set in order to do that.
It’s important that you bear in mind the ideals you had for this business when you began. Because if your directors are not on board with the way that you have nurtured your business up to this point, if they are not aware of the hard work you’ve put in to learn the methods that Agent Rainmaker teaches, then there’s a real danger that the business will end up just the same as every other letting agency out there on the high street – beige and boring. And that not the way we do things. So you need to pass on all of your knowledge.
Get with the programme
When you bring in your directors, you have to show them how to do things using your methods; your programme. They need to be able to follow your programme to the letter, so that they are able to continue to provide the same level of service that you have given up to now. That’s so important, because if the services, or the way your business does things suddenly changes, it will have an effect on your landlords, your tenants, and your staff.
Having clear guidelines in place, and using those great leadership skills you’ve practiced, will be vital in showing your board of directors how you want your business to be run, now and in the future.
What’s the strategy?
Your main job at this stage is strategy. You need to be continuously strategizing while your senior management are busy running the business. It’s them who will be worrying about leading the team at ground level, and passing on the mind-set. They will be training what you have taught them on the ground – you will be concentrating on strategy and building the business from the top.
The key is to remember that your time is valuable – if you are too busy fretting about what’s going on down there on the ground, you won’t be spending time where you should be, looking at opportunities to grow.