Welcome to Business Growth! Why Doesn’t it Feel Good?

CEO or executive leader, is this you? Your company has reached new heights and you consider yourself an advanced business leader. You are surprised that with this new success, you feel off-kilter—and not as content as you thought would be. Business is progressing, so what’s the problem? 

Perhaps you have lots of questions mulling through your brain. Success is taking you into uncharted territory. And behind the scenes, you sometimes feel like you are making up your role and your decisions as you go. Inwardly, you are uncomfortable. There are some nagging concerns about how to be most effective in driving the company and team forward in this unfamiliar way

Welcome to change and growth for you and your businessas you explore, remember…  

It’s been said, “Everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you’re climbing it.” 

Strong leaders ask questions. Recognizing areas of professional and personal challenge, in the midst of uncertainty, shows sound thinking. Agility is a must. Honestly, though scary, it’s an exciting place to be. Your uncertainty and questions take you on a journey of leadership development that parallels your business growth. And to your team, you are demonstrating that there is continuous learning, no matter your role. This is vital.    

It’s fair to say that you are feeling more vulnerable. There’s nothing to hide.

It’s okay to openly admit it, because as you feel more responsibility and accountability pressing in on you, you have to up your game. It’s just the way it is. It becomes necessary to assess where the company is currently atidentify where the business has expanded. Change is happening, so navigating through each day, to achieve strong outcomes, is more complex. When your business is experiencing expansion, you too feel the growing pains. It is to be expected. This  growth and change at a new level, challenges your leadership ability.    

All too often, I find that C-Suite leaders resist admitting how they’re feeling, because they don’t want their team (or me as their business consultant) to think they don’t know what they’re doing. If you are moving into new territory and achieving unprecedented success, the fact is, sometimes you don’t know what you are doing. We only know what we know, right?    

Is this you? As you consider or take on new business development opportunities, are questions and uncertainty suddenly hindering your confidence in your decision-making? You may fear you are leading the wrong way. On top of that, you realize this stage of business doesn’t feel like you imagined it would. 

As you face these realities, and assess where your business is, don’t head out alone. You have a bridge to cross, which needs the inclusion of soliciting input from your team and from your peers. In doing so, you genuinely acknowledge the value of others' contributions, which influences your own growth and a culture of trust and unity within your company.

As you work to get your footing, accept that your foundation feels a bit shaky. Even getting completely tripped up isn’t unusual. Business strategies and team functions need to be reassessed. It becomes necessary to pivot at times. And allocation of resources (people and capital) fill you with even more questions. There’s no shortage of opportunity to get curious in the midst of all the questions..

In every sustainable business, you must address the need to restructure from time to time.

Nothing can stay exactly the same in business growth. So… a big congratulations to you for forging ahead. You actually have no choice, assessing current business and team needs is part of the sustainable business practice.

Every day, I consult with companies experiencing this stage. Nothing is certain and you need to bridge the gaps to build more dimension and strength on your original foundation. Knowing that this is reality in business, what do I suggest that you do next? 

First, as you stretch and adapt to your business and leadership growing pains, it helps you to know this is a common and necessary road to travel as a business leader. It’s not unusual that adjusting and adding functions within your business causes you to feel weighty leadership responsibilities! It creates ongoing learning curves to develop and sustain the knowledge, strategies, and mindset to successfully lead your business and your team onward to reliable, stable growth.   

MINDSET FOR STRONG LEADERSHIP: Pause when needed as you strive to be your best self; most importantly, know that you are okay today. Most likely you (yourself) will be okay tomorrow, too, even if there is chaos around you. And as a business leader, know that you aren’t alone if you are experiencing surprises and changes that are keeping you awake at night. That being said, seek trusted peer support, and make it a priority to support your wellness on a regular basis. If not, your endurance and effectiveness are put to the test. 

FOOD FOR THOUGHT AS YOU ASSESS THE GAPS: 
  • Do you feel alone at the top? Has change from business growth made you uncertain how to effectively lead and move forward? 
  • Reassess your confidence and what type of leader you are. What is your leadership style? 
  • Strengthen yourself; remember your purpose and passion. Why are you doing this work? 
  • Be transparent. What do you need to learn? Seek others who can teach and support your learning journey.
  • Efficiently convey clear, new expectations. Keep all eyes on the goals as you communicate to your team. 
  • Your company: Where has it been? Where is it now? Where is it going? How will you get there? Who and what is needed? Welcome team innovation—together, build your bridge over the gaps!    
  • What do you need to let go of?  What (functions) or who (people) do you need more of?
  • Clarify how or who needs to actively lead the change that needs to happen? Don’t make assumptionsclarify functions and roles!   
COMMON TEAM CHALLENGE
  • Do some of your people feel the responsibility, but lack the authority to take action to help bridge the gaps? 
  • Are you (and everyone on your team) putting out fires, rather than spending time on planning and strategies that lead to conscious and productive actions that achieve intended results?
IT’S TIME TO EXPLORE and ASSESSWHERE ARE YOU? 

PICTURE THE BRIDGE THAT ADVANCES YOUR LEADERSHIP AND YOUR COMPANY

You are in a stage of business where growth demands that questions be answered and business concepts and gaps be bridged. Perhaps restructure is needed. 

CEOs, C-SUITE  and EXECUTIVE LEADERS, need to know what the business needs and know what team’s need when growth happens! Revisit “basic business 101”—the budget: operations, inventory and purchases, administrative, profit and loss, financial standing, allocation and resources. 

IN BUSINESS, IN BOTH GOOD TIMES AND BAD, ASK YOURSELF:
  • Where are we? How did we get/land here?
  • What has changed?
  • How do we keep our best talent?
  • How do you create stability and growth?
  • What is the optimal function of our programs? Our team?
  • Do we have the latest assessment about our team, our products/services, our target audience!

Gaining a clear understanding of your business needs and the solutions, is a bridge of operational knowledge that moves the business responsibly forward. Is restructure needed?  

Your questions are welcome. My next blog on restructure will be helpful to you. 
– Barbara 

Barbara Schindler
Executive Coach, Entrepreneurial Consultant, COO Leading Edge Teams

Defining individual skills and team goals to challenge the norms and stretch imaginations.

Besides decades of diverse business experience, Barbara holds a Bachelor’s degree in Human Behavior and Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from Ryokan College, as well as a Master’s degree in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica. She delights in seeing her clients fully experience their unique business leadership talents as they step up to the next level professionally and personally.

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