Fast-forward 12 months. The year is winding down and it’s time to reflect.
How quickly the year has flown. Your company has done OK, but there are several important objectives, including several personal ones, you just didn’t have time to achieve. And you were busy. You may even be exhausted. You’re thinking to yourself, next year will be different. But will it?
During the last several months, I’ve visited with over a hundred of the most successful business owners in Texas. I interviewed them about their success. These are the private business CEOs that consistently win performance awards for rapid revenue growth, profitability, leadership, best workplaces, and superior entrepreneurship.
When surveyed, the vast majority of these outstanding company builders reported a record year, despite a lackluster economy. Interestingly, most also reported a much lower level of stress than last year and said they spent a much larger percentage of time doing things that they really loved, all while increasing their company valuation. More profit, more vacation, more peace of mind…
Will this be your story next year?
All of these successful CEOs and presidents have unique businesses. How did they do it?
Instead of worrying about things outside of their control, each took proactive responsibility for the beliefs and activities they could control, leading to remarkable results and personal freedom.
Here are five simple choices – each of these outstanding owners chose to make unconditional commitments prior to starting their year:
They committed to start with the end in mind. They developed a clear, inspirational personal vision. They then developed a clear vision for their business (including a succession plan or exit strategy) that aligned perfectly with their personal vision.
They committed to allocate sufficient time for themselves. No matter how many fires were burning.
They committed to eliminate mediocrity and entitlement mentality. They raised their expectations and then raised everyone else’s expectations. They insisted that their company would have the right people on the right seats on the bus. Then they held everyone accountable to the new higher standards.
They committed to have enough capital to operate their business and execute their plans.
They committed to use their time in the most effective way and used delegation as a critical element of highly leveraged successful leadership. They committed to proactively use a process to focus their precious time and energy on the true priorities, executing the essential, non-negotiable components of an effective CEO job description:
They planned. They improved operational health, financial health, and executive and communication blind spots. They analyzed & improved stakeholder satisfaction, the leading indicator of future results. They met with peer CEOs, and held themselves accountable to ensure effective execution on the commitments above.
If these things seem time consuming, think again. These decisions are all massive time savers and stress removers. Choosing to take responsibility for behaving like an effective business owner will help to generate improved results for the company and more freedom to spend time doing the things you love most. No magic, just choices.
Joe Zente is the President/CEO of Z|three Performance Development. Joe founded Z|three over 15 years ago to help private business owners exceed their sales, business and life goals. Z|three is located in Austin.
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