Soon after I started working for myself, a mentor told me to read The E-Myth Revisited*. It turned out to be game changing for me, mainly in helping me transition from being an employee and into embracing the three business personalities I would need to be successful. I don’t know about you, but I think it should be required reading for anyone starting a new venture that she plans to run.
I learned pretty quickly that I was one hell of a technician. And I seemed to have the entrepreneurial aspects fairly nailed. It was that danged manager personality I knew nothing about, really. And until I read the book and started to learn what it meant to be a manager, and, more importantly how to be a good steward for my business and my clients, that pesky technician tried to manage things—always to my detriment.
And what have I learned about being a crappy manager in nearly 25 years in business, and through conversations with the hundreds of service business owners that I’ve helped to put foundations under their newborn businesses? It’s this: the vast majority of people who create new businesses do so because they had an idea or dream, and a skill they could use to make the idea an offering that customers of the business would want. And delivering that ideal or dream based on that skill is exactly and only what they went into business to do and what they believed they would spend their time doing. It doesn’t take long to realize there’s more to operating a successful enterprise.
People go into real estate to sell/buy/flip property. People become life coaches to help people live better. People become landscapers to share their skills around design and plant maintenance. But almost no one goes into business to manage a business, and I bet you didn’t, either.
And yet, running a business requires you must whip out that manager personality and deal with all the managerial things that every business needs to have done.
So what’s a fine person like yourself to do, especially if you really don’t know how to manage or don’t love to manage? Find yourself an eagle.
That’s the term I use for an AssistU VA who has found in herself a passion for helping to manage the operational and administrative aspects of her clients’ businesses.
I talk more about eagles, and their compliments, the goats, here.
But the reality is that if you don’t want to hire a full-time manager, and you don’t want to manage things yourself, and you’re growing (as I hope you are!), or stuck (as I hope you’re not!), then something has to give.
And a VA who identifies as an eagle is a really good bet, before you get to the place where something has to give.
Now you know how I said that no almost no one goes into business to manage a business? The key phrase there is “almost no one.” And that’s because some AssistU VAs do. They want, with every fiber of their beings, to watch over your business and make sure things are running smoothly. They love being able to have you do the entrepreneurial things that only you can do for your business. And while they aren’t you, and won’t make decisions for you that you should be making (they don’t want you to check out completely or abdicate responsibility for your business), they do want to collaborate with you, and then make things better for you by using their mad skills in a way that you don’t want to develop or use your own skills.
So… as an example of all of that, let’s say that you know you need to move away from MailChimp, but aren’t sure if you want to use Active Campaign or Ontraport, and you just heard about Drip and wonder if that’s the way to go. Don’t ask her to decide for you; your money and biz, your decision. Collaborate; discuss it, work together to figure out which would be best for your biz, and then let her go off to manage the process and people to get you moved over and set up.
Of course, it’s more complex than that, because you have to find someone who is a perfect fit for you, and for your business culture (including voice), and you have to make investments in the relationship, in helping her see your entrepreneurial vision, and you have to get out of her way as she helps put systems and processes in place to allow all the good managing to happen, but you’re ok with that, right? :D
When you’re ready, we can help. Or you can ask your friends about the people who manage things for them and head in that direction. Whatever works, works. Just know that you and your business deserve the right help, and it’s out here waiting for you to reach for it. ♥
*In case you are one of the people who hasn’t read the book, please go buy it and devour it now. You can get a copy here. That’s our affiliate link, and if you buy from Amazon after clicking the link we earn a tiny morsel of commission. Here’s why we bother: we believe in doing good as we are doing well, so each year, we select three charities to support. All of them must have missions that touch us, they must serve at-risk women and children here in the US, and they must use their money wisely. Part of the money we give to them is 100% of the affiliate commission we earn from all sources. So, if you feel touched by any of our choices, and feel moved to help us help them, please click the link and buy the book.