Everyone knows the name of a famous coach; Lombardi, Demers, Landry, Harmon, etc. Professional athletes and teams require a coach to perform and win. In fact, today’s top athletes have an entourage of people from their sports psychologist, to their nutritionist, to their team of coaches. Why? Because each member of their circle gives them three things: ideas and information, accountability, and perspective. You cannot play full speed on the field of competition and also evaluate, monitor and measure your performance at the same time. Outside perspective is critical from people on the sidelines who are developing new strategy and collecting data while you execute on the field.
Most athletes are in competition intermittently. The NFL plays one day a week, the Olympics occur once every 4 years, and the NHL plays a couple of times a week. However, for business owners and entrepreneurs, “Game Day” is five or six days a week. It is a relenting schedule of performance that not too many understand.
The market demands that to grow, compete and ideally dominate your industry, you need to be at your top performance. Any professional athlete will tell you it’s a lot more complicated than it looks. Javelin throwing appears pretty basic, but when broken into its components, it’s a study that takes decades to perfect.
A business has thousands of moving parts in broad categories, like sales, marketing, finance, admin, people, etc. On a micro or tactical level, its mindboggling. 462 options and tactics in sales alone, as well as 86 finance ideas to consider. It is obvious why you need outside help.
When it comes to successful business growth, often times owners are either too close or too far from key issues within the company to identify the most effective path forward. Leaders must have a thorough knowledge of the inner workings of their business, as well as make sure their employees are doing the same, to be able to combine strategy and execution. This is where outside perspective can be very valuable, as well as take on many forms. So, why not employ as many as you can? Like the pro athlete, anyone that can help drive the performance of you and your business is someone you need to utilize.
You should have an advisory board, a business coach, or a peer group (EO for example). Every person or group that gives you outside perspective, ideas, accountability, and accelerates your performance in business. The resources and outside opinions you need will change. As you grow and your company develops, different mentors and experts will be required. Expect that your team of perspective providers will grow and change too. It is a natural evolution and confirmation that you’re improving.
Look at who is providing you consistent perspective, information and accountability in your company today. Make a commitment now to expand your coaching staff and your entourage of experts to improve your performance on the field of business.
The Keys to Finding Outside Perspective and Guidance
Right People – Build a team of the right people, who can flawlessly develop and execute a growth. Make sure everyone on the team thoroughly understands your vision and goals. As well, frame it in a way that benefits them so that they feel personally connected to making the business a success.
Don’t Go Straight To the Top – To make a useful connection at any company, begin by finding the right person to talk to. Don’t just go straight to the top. For example, if you offer IT services, reach out to someone working in operations.
Offer Something In Return – Think of ways you can benefit the person or business you are contacting for advice. Don’t just ask what they can do for you. Additionally, show ways you have supported them in the past, and you’re more likely to get genuine guidance.
Personalize Your Request – When seeking outside perspective and advice, make sure to do your research and personalize your request. Make an effort to find out out what’s important to the person you are contacting, how their company works, and who does what. People are more likely to go the extra mile for someone that demonstrates effort into understanding them.
Seek Out Focused Coaching Relationships – Most top performers in any industry have a coach, someone whose main purpose is to encourage improvement. Find someone who can poke holes in your ideas, review your proposals, and conduct skill-building dry runs with. Effort, combined with insights from a coach, can lead to higher performance.
Be Clear About What You Want – Most “partnerships” are just people wanting to sell stuff to another company or their clients. If you are seeking out guidance from another business owner with intentions of creating a partnership in the future, outline the mutual benefits upfront. If you show that you can also offer something of value, you’re more likely to get that meeting.
Get An Accountability Partner – If you are looking for a way to stay on track of your goals, get an accountability partner. Find a trusted friend or colleague who you can be in regular contact with to keep eachother on track to accomplish for your weekly, monthly, or even yearly goals. Knowing that someone is keeping track on your success can help motivate you to accomplish your goals and be productive.
As a business owner, you must be open to lifelong learning and constructive feedback. Even the most successful entrepreneurs have entire teams behind them, and seek outside perspective on a constant basis. At Evolve Business Group, we believe the development and growth of your company is not just about revenues and profits but also the personal growth of owners, managers and the team. Through personalized coaching, we can make you a leader in your industry and provide you with the tools you need to improve performance. For more information, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.