Monday, May 5, 2008


I'm currently dealing with a prospect who wants to hire me. Problem is... (are you ready for this?) she has no clue where her startup stands financially. She is a 51% owner and has a 49% investor (she refers to him as a Partner). At the same time, she has no idea how much money has been spent so far and if she needs to invest in anything, she has to go to this guy with her hand out to get anything done.

Enormous CEO mistake: ABDICATING
When CEOs aren't adept at delegating to the proper people with the proper boundaries of responsibilities, or if they don't have the knowledge to communicate about those issues, they tend to abdicate. Abdication is washing your hands of the situation because you don't know how (or want) to deal with the subject. It's the "I've had it up to here; you do it" reaction. Abdication has no follow-up component and no feedback component.

Then, when the abdication fails, CEOs either fall into the trap of "They can't help. I have to do everything myself." or the quicksand of "I need to throw more money at this problem and hopefully save my business." Now, you're either stuck doing all the lower-level work that will never drive the business forward or you're out of business. Either case is a disaster that could have been avoided.

You must break free of your mental traps such as: "I don't want to know about the financial (technology / legal / sales /etc.) stuff." "It's too difficult." or "The work will not be as good." This is head trash. These are YOUR issues. Know your business, and start by knowing yourself and what your weaknesses are. Hire those with those skills as strengths and watch your business soar.

No comments: